Monday, March 19, 2018

The Power Of Now, Eckhart Tolle

I'm guessing that I read this book for the first time in like 02-03. I remembered it, found it interesting, but very very off the wall and impractical at that time.My copy exists somewhere in the manifested universe (as opposed to the unmanifested (spiritual)), but I could not find it, so I manifested a new paperback version from Amazon to lend to someone that I believe it might resonate with.

When I first read it in I found Tolle to be "From a Galaxy Far Far Away". Fast forward past a number of personal and family crisis, meditation, lots of more mystical (and ancient) Christian teachings and DBT (especially Mindfulness), and it seems a good deal less "out there" ... perhaps "Pluto". Who knows, another couple decades and ....

The statement in the book that resonates most with me is on page 190, "I have lived with several Zen masters, all of them cats." While sometimes I find Tolle taking himself a bit too seriously, that line redeems a lot of mileage for me! One of those masters graces our home today (Ferocious Cabadocious)  -- past masters include Tiger and the ineffible Dobson, sometimes fearsome sage of terrible wisdom.

His best philosophic statement is on 15; "The philosopher Descartes believed he had found the most fundamental truth when he made his famous statement: "I think, therefore I am". he had in fact given expression to the most fundamental error: to equate thinking with Being, and identity with thinking."

If you can learn to sit quietly, observing your breath, and as your mind chatters incessantly, OBSERVE IT -- do not judge it! Treat it gently, like a puppy or a toddler -- ACKNOWLEDGE what thoughts are flowing by, and calmly return to focusing on your breath.You will experience Descartes error.

 If you are a "natural", after a "few times", the chatter will slow and you will EXPERIENCE that you are NOT YOUR MIND!!! You HAVE a mind, and a body, and emotions -- but they are not YOU. YOU are spirit ... or consciousness if you prefer.

It is a great way to debunk one of the greatest minds in history in a slightly more metaphysical version of Dr Johnson's "Appeal to the stone".

If you are an UNnatural like me, that experience may take like "100" tries -- the early ones being Panic Attacks, or near so, with LOTS of mind shouting, THIS IS ***NOT*** working! This is stupid!  Satanic!  insane! dangerous! a waste of time!  etc, etc

We Westerners tend to live in and identify with our minds -- it is where our ego resides. My mind was nearly my only residence for my whole IBM career and a few years after. I agree that the EXPERIENCE of being a little "i am' watching your breath, your mind and your emotions is significant, and to a degree "transcendent", possibly even "enlightening" with a very little "e", but I find that Tolle oversells anyway -- much in the same manner as a lot of other marketing.

I'm NOT saying that he is "lying" ... he may well completely believe in all he says. He IS after all Oprah Approved!,  so marketing or truth, it has certainly worked. My advice would be to try DBT first -- it has a lot more research and science behind it, however if Tolle speaks to you, go for it. Scotch, Bourbon, Irish, Canadian ... it's all Whiskey (or Whisky, hard to agree on anything!)

Oh, and getting out of your mind isn't quite enough -- the "real you", the spiritual you, must learn to live in full acceptance of NOW ... this moment and ONLY this moment which is where we ALWAYS exist, AS IT IS! Not as you wish it, believe it "should be", etc, etc. It is here you stand to have the leverage to change the future -- or decide NOT to change the future. The past? Well, the past you are not going to change no matter how much you invest in it. In DBT, we call that Radical Acceptance.

p154, "If you stop investing it with "selfness", the mind loses it's compulsive quality, which is basically the compulson to judge, and so resist what is, which creates conflict, drama and new pain." ... a little farther on, "... the greatest catlyst for change in a relationship is complete acceptance of your parter [or anyone you deal with] as he or she is, without needing to judge or change them in any way."

The best reason for doing that is because the nearly 100% probability is that you CAN'T change that other person! You might bludgeon them physically or emotionally into "compliance", however unless THEY wanted to change (or they are already less in their minds than you), you will only create pain and damage.

Just as in DBT, many people take this all as "giving up", or "not caring'. Not so -- in fact, you nearly MUST be outside of your mind to actually care, because otherwise, pretty much all you are doing is feeding your own ego. Your mind will continue to have lots of thoughts on lots of things -- you can share them, talk about them, carry signs for them, etc, you will just realize that they are not YOU.

YOU are "not of this world" ... you havc no reson to invest your ego in this world. In fact, as much as possible, your ego is to be DEAD ... either crucified with Christ, or vanished into Tolle's "unmanifested'. Your ego is your mind talking -- it's your "old address' ... like "666 Gray Matter Parkway", vs "All One -- Infinity Drive'.

While Tolle either believes, or simply wants to maximize his audience, he tries to make this book accessible to any or no religion  -- although on this read, I was surprised by how much semi-New Testament he actually does include.

It's a book worthy enough at least to have someone else buy it and lend it to you!

Friday, March 16, 2018

Boundaries, By Dr Henry Cloud and Dr John Townsend

This book is one of the highest rated books on the topic of boundaries, and it is very Bible based. I DO recommend the book On page 61 they do the definition:

"Functional Boundaries refer to a person's ability to complete a task, project or job."
"Relational Boundaries refer to the ability to speak truth to others with whom we are in relationship"

Simple, huh?

Due to my contrarian nature, ll start with a critical thought: 

I find the term "boundaries" to be misleading. I understand the reason for the term, and the book does a great job of telling the people that REALLY need to develop some boundaries about how important they are, and how they "should" go about establishing them -- usually putting their foot down, standing 100% firm, and often taking the consequences -- loss of relationship, maybe violence or attempted violence, huge angry outburst, etc.

Obviously, if you are worried about a violent response, the person you are setting this boundary with walking out and never speaking with you again, giant anger, etc, then certainly, you REALLY need "boundaries" -- really best called "walls" in the context the book often talks about. To my mind, a WALL is something put up by one party (like the Berlin wall), and enforced with force -- maybe even "deadly force" as in "comply or this relationship is permanently over".

If I do my version, it will be called "loving contracts", or "good fences make good neighbors", or something of the like. My point is that there is a BIG difference between a neighbor going over to his neighbor and saying "I'd like to put up a fence -- dog issues, kid issues, your 16 year old daughter sunbathing naked is distracting my 13 year old boy, etc ... can we talk together about height, styles, etc over a beer" and you suddenly putting up a 20' lime green monstrosity and telling him "it's on the property line, get over it".

I think they wanted to cover this with page 66, "Don't even try to start setting limits until you have entered into deep abiding attachments with people who will love you no matter what".

Page 156 was important to me. "People don't make other people angry. Your anger has to come from something inside of you". Later; "Problems arise when we make someone else responsible for our needs and wants, and when we blame that person for our disappointments".

Bottom line, we all have to own our feelings -- we are ALL selfish, and we ALL seek to get our needs met by others (and for some needs, have to). In close relationships, that means that we deal with conflicting wants, and we need to NEGOTIATE ... which is much better than slapping up a 20' wall without consulting our "partner'.

Chapter 10, "Boundaries and your Children" needs to be made required reading for those seeking a license for having children. Oh, there isn't such a license? Damn.

"Discipline is an external boundary, designed to develop internal boundaries in our children. It provides a structure of safety until children have enough structure in their character to not need it". Later; "Discipline is not payment for a wrong. It is the natural law of God: our actions reap consequences. Discipline is different from punishment because God is finished punishing us. Punishment ended on the Cross for all those who accept Christ as Savior". 
I grew up on a farm. Hard work was as much a part of life as breathing, and I was a VERY lazy kid -- I still drew breath and worked. I also attended church, often with LOTS of bellyaching -- it was just the way it was. Fast forward to today -- unless parents have the intestinal fortitude to work HARD to insure their children learn responsibility and the fear of God, all bets are off. The Ten Commandments have been removed from most public buildings and certainly from the schools. "Honor your father and mother" is pretty much  considered a matter of discredited "mythology" rather than the only commandment with a promise. "Work" can be nigh on inaccessible at home given "convienience", while the Internet, video games, marketing, social media, etc are INTRUSIVE!

In the middle of 174, "The freedom of the Cross allows us to practice without having to pay a terrible price. The only danger is consequences, not isolation and judgment." .. THANKS BE TO GOD! Paul said in Timothy 1:15 "Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners—of whom I am the worst." ... he is right about Christ, he is wrong that he is the worst -- I've won that race in personal failure after personal failure for which I am most grievously at fault,

As I've been able to study more an more theology after retirement, the following becomes more and more clear, and more and more scary -- page 260:

"God gives a choice and allows the people involved to make up their minds. When people say no, he allows it and keeps on loving them. He is a giver. And one of the things he always gives is a choice, and like a real giver, he also gives the consequences of those choices. He respects boundaries." 

We live in a world where many people believe that "someone" or "some thing" can allow radically free choices, yet remove the consequences.  They often believe that their choices OUGHT to be free of consequences. People really "ought" to be able to do whatever they want and never suffer the consequences.

On page 121, the authors provide a ray of hope to those injured by "boundaries" that were really walls or 20' ugly fences with no consultation.

"If you set limits with someone and she responds maturely and lovingly, you can renegotiate the boundary. In addition, you can change the boundary if you are in a safer place". 
It is a worthy book, again, I highly recommend it. Just don't go out and put up a 20' chartreuse fence with your neighbor and expect them to bake you a cake ... and if they do, don't eat it!

Monday, March 12, 2018

The High Conflict Couple, Alan E Fruzzetti, PHD

While this book is written to "couples", it will be of nearly equal value to almost anyone that has conflicts in relationships. In today's world, that has to come very close to 100% of us, with the conflicts generally being more nasty and longer lived.

Since the 1960's we have consistently pushed for each of our views, values, wishes, visions, desires, etc to be of ultimate importance, while the old shared values of "God, Country, Family, Church, Community" are now of much less to no often importance at all.

So there are less shared values, more conflict, and one of the ways that many hope to deal with it is to "ignore it and it will go away' ... I find this paragraph from page to 11 to be as true, direct, and scary as pretty much anything I've read in books of this type:

" Unlike the other patterns, in the engage-distance pattern, there is an imbalence between the partners: one moves one way, the other goes in a different direction. That is one person wants to discuss or pursue a topic and be together, but the other person, at least in that moment, does not want to discuss a topic further, or perhaps not even be together, and instead seeks some alone time. What makes this pattern particularly tricky si that the engager or distancer can start out doing so in either an effective or a constructive way or a more destructive, aversive, or avoidant way, but reguardless, the pattern ends up being a disaster." 
Typically, the "avoider" is conflict averse and  REALLY wants it to "just all blow over", or "maybe things will get better on their own" -- they don't. What it leads to is anger in the relationship ... sooner and later. Anger is a valid emotion -- we all have it. The problem with it in relationships is discussed on page 25  " ... there is a very corrosive aspect to anger in close relationships that often overshadows any possible benefits".

"...feeling angry means having increased negative emotional arousal; this in turn churns out judgements. Judgements then increase arousal, which produces more judgements, wheich leads to inaccurate and ineffective expression of emotion and desires, which then results in misunderstanding and conflict and rarely leads to effective changes. Thus, angry feelings and angry expressions in close relationships almost always create distance, and distance is the enemy of closeness and intimacy ..."  
Page 46 has even worse news:
"In addition, being together passively can be risky: partners may begin to focus a lot of negative attention on each other inside their own heads, running a list of negative past deeds or anticipated future deeds through their minds, privately judging or criticizing the other,  becoming upset and eventually going on "red alert" waiting for the other to do something and then snapping at him or her ..." 

So what are we to do? The big picture  in the book is "DBT" ... of which I have a website here with lots of videos and charts if you are interested.

DBT goes out of it's way to NOT be "Christianity" -- in fact, it is based on Buddhism. However,  the big messages -- "BE STILL!  ... "BE PRESENT" ... "Observe, do not judge", "ACCEPT", "Let go and let God" (or "release your attachments" in the Budhist perspective) are quite similar.

What is REALLY needed is for both people in any relationship -- "intimate", or other, to follow the principles of DBT as they discuss issues they have -- hopefully as quickly as possible. More "simmering" just tends to insure that everyone gets at least "scorched", if not fully burned.

DBT is like excercise for your mind and emotions. We ALL have BOTH "Emotional Mind" and "Rational Mind" -- if we practice and observe, we get the gift of "Wise Mind". Modern people tend to spend a lot of time trying to talk reason to people in Emotion Mind (totally useless). Here is a link to these pictures. 

"Why we can't communicate" is because we are speaking different languages. For those of us raised in an era where there were more assumptions that emotions are often invalid, and EVERYTHING can be solved by reason, we can be "very good" (in a scientific lawyerly sense) of "making the case" why the emotional position is "loses" -- and usually the relationship is what REALLY loses!

Wise mind is a solution to getting on the same page -- at least one party has to "give" and be willing to take the risk of reaching out, AND often accepting some INvalidation, anger, judgement, etc without "giving as "good" as you get" ... and thus break the cycle and insert hope.

Wise Mind demands being unhurried, being respectful and non-judgemental, It demands Acceptance -- even of things that we really don't like.  We do not have to LIKE or "agree with" things  to accept them ... we can be a parapalegic for life, radically accept it, and not "like" it! Our son can join a cult that worships space aliens, and we can accept it ... and even validate it "I understand how you find the group you joined to supportive" without AGREEING with him.

Many in our society even encourage denying acceptance of reality in order to not "normalize" some facet of reality. I really like this video of Marsha Linehan, the creator of DBT on that topic ...

I believe that the book is of "use" without the PRACTICE of DBT, however it is going to be FAR more powerful with a daily practice of at least Mindfulness and Radical Acceptance (Interpersonal Effectiveness and Emotional Regulation are good as well).

Everyone that reads this blog knows that I believe that Christ is what we really need to restore our broken world full of increasingly broken, addicted,  and even suicidal people, often at each others throats. For those that are not going to go there, DBT can help -- you may not learn to love your neighbor, or even your spouse, however you are much more likely to be able to tolerate them -- and even yourself.

 Needless to say, I HIGHLY recommend the book, and or course DBT -- I've become somewhat of a zealot on that topic. I'll leave you with this last video -- there are many more out on the DBT Site link above.

Monday, March 05, 2018

Back When Entertainers Were Funny And Politicians Laughed Together

I'm on too many lists and too many people send me stuff ... I really enjoyed this. I used to think my folks were completely dim when they talked of "the good old days". They may have been ... and that just means I'm just as dim now. In case you are wondering, he DOES juggle as well as do comedy.

Sunday, March 04, 2018

NPR, Straight Up Gridiron

At Gridiron Dinner, Trump Trades Jabs With His 'Opposition Party' : The Two-Way : NPR:

 This is worth a read -- I'd rate it 100% down the middle straight up unbiased reporting from NPR. I complain when I see them as telling us how to think vs reporting, I need to applaud them when I see them doing well.

My belief is that some of the major fault our general modern glumness is the 24x7 news stations where everything is "Special Report", "The Crisis in ... (our minds?)", "ALERT!" ...

We are on this rock for "three score and 10" give or take, and pretty much ALL of us take ourselves WAY too seriously for WAY too much of that time. At least by age 60, we have all generally had broken parts of our body, our lives, our plans, our dreams and lots of embarrassing, even humiliating experiences ... social, medical and otherwise. My belief is that one of the tasks the Good Lord gives  us in this life is to realize that ALL of it is in the blessing column ... maybe especially the parts that we judge to be "bad".

As Joseph told the brothers who sold him into slavery in Genesis 50:20 "As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good, to bring it about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today."

Or even better (on laughter) ... God promising Sarah she would bear a son in Genesis 18

Then they said to him, “Where is Sarah your wife?” And he said, “There, in the tent.” 10 He said, “I will surely return to you at this time next year; and behold, Sarah your wife will  have a son.” And Sarah was listening at the tent door, which was behind him. 11 Now Abraham and Sarah were old, advanced in age; Sarah was past childbearing. 12 Sarah laughed to herself, saying, “After I have become old, shall I have pleasure, my lord being old also?” 13 And the LORD said to Abraham, “Why did Sarah laugh, saying, ‘Shall I indeed bear a child, when I am so old?’ 14 “Is anything too difficult for the LORD? At the appointed time I will return to you, at this time next year, and Sarah will have a son.” 15 Sarah denied it however, saying, “I did not laugh”; for she was afraid. And He said, “No, but you did laugh.”
How impossible it is for old Abram becoming "Father Abraham", the root of the Abrahamic religions, Judaism, Christianity and Islam? We are created in God's image, so we know that the Lord of all knows and understands laughter.

The linked isn't very long, and "feels nice" ... a flavor:

There was Attorney General Jeff Sessions, a favorite object of Trump's biting comments on Twitter, getting one this time in person: "You know, it's weird, I offered him a ride over — and he recused himself!"
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Saturday, March 03, 2018

Snow / Cold Batters Europe

Heaviest Snow in Decades Batters U.K., Ireland and the Continent - The New York Times:

Europe is being battered by winter weather ... the UK, snow in Rome, cold on the French Riveara. This is of course WEATHER,

Naturally, this cold and snowy weather is due to ACC  (Anthropogenic Climate Change) the settled science formerly known as AGW ... as is all current weather according to the concept of "settled science".
The cold weather in Britain and northwestern Europe is to some extent a mirror image of the “sudden stratospheric warming” in the arctic, experts say, referring to a disturbance in the polar jet stream that has alarmed scientists and forced some to reconsider even the most pessimistic forecasts for climate change.
 The main science that has been settled relative to climate is that "carbon dioxide determines climate".

The cycles of CO2 in the atmosphere over the last 400K+ years have been determined through looking at air trapped in ice cores from Antarctica. ... you can spend the rest of your life studying ice core data if you are interested ... it all looks similar in some ways -- roughly 100K year cycles of lots of cold and glaciers  puncuated by relatively tiny warm interglacial periods of 10-20K years like the one that we and all of human history are in ... the Holocene.

The when coupled with temperature, the charts certainly show a CORRELATION between temperature and CO2, but as any High School statistician will tell you, correlation is NOT causality -- ice cream sales and drowning deaths are definitely correlated, but that is do to a common causal factor (warm days) rather than one causing the other. The correlation between CO2 and temrature could run either way -- warmer temps release more CO2 from oceans so number goes up, OR "something else" ... more animal life, termites, ocean life, fires, SOMETHING raises the CO2 levels to cause the temperature to rise.

Freeman Dyson and myself are the sort of idiots that point out that unless one postulates past human carbon burning civilizations at roughly 120K BC, 240K BC, etc, warming can clearly happen without human causes, so ACC is WAY short of an "explanation".

There is however one rather large object 93 million miles away that just possibly might have some effect on temperature cycles on earth. Strangely, that object ALSO appears to have variation in it's output and we are heading into a projected 500 year low in solar output.

From the linked article quote above, it is clear that climate scientists ASSUME that warm temps at the N pole show that we are still warming. Since the N pole is ocean, the best we can hope for as a proxy is cores from Greenland -- interestingly, it appears that the oldest core data from Greenland is only aout 150K years old  ... meaning that when it gets as warm as it did in the last interglacial, the ice on Greenland melts.

Since record keeping humans have never lived through the ending of a warm period, the LONG period of cold and continental glaciers, follwed by the start of a new warm period in 100K years or so, my assertion is that the ONLY thing about climate that is actually "settled" is a lot like what is settled about the Stock Market ... "it fluctuates".

While everyone else is apocolyptic about the perils of a few degrees of extra warmth, I've long had a facination with what it will be like the next time the planet leaves the interglacial we are in now and enters a new glacial. My best guess is that weather will fluctuate wildly and we will begin to see more events like what we see in Europe right now -- in my mind, solar output is likely a LARGE factor, along with ever greater and longer lasting snow cover on the continents. For a good long while, the oceans might actually remain or even increase in warmth -- thus keeping the N pole ice free while the contininents start to develop larger and larger continental glaciers.

When I was in college in the '70s, concern about an upcoming ice age was the primary "cimate issue", although it was much more a pure science discussion ... the ice core data shows that we SEEM to be "overdue" for an ice age, however, given the length of these cycles, we don't really know if the last "million years" are "typical" relative to frequency and length of glacials / interglacials. Geologists think we have been in an "ice age" for the last 60 million years or so, meaning that there is SOME ice on the planet, which there isn't in the truely warm periods.

Although it will no doubt make a LARGE change in human life on the planet, I must admit that even though it would certainly be WAY more challenging than warming, living through something like the "Little Ice Age" where lakes in this part of the world stayed mostly frozen year around ... back in 2014 we had ice floating around Lake Superior in the middle of June ... events like that and this one in Europe would seem to my foolish view of what cooling might look like.

Other than my religious faith, I tend to enjoy things that are NOT "settled"!

'via Blog this'

Friday, March 02, 2018


Depth Of Russian Politician's Cultivation Of NRA Ties Revealed : NPR:

I'm old enough to remember when breathless NPR reporting on the superb conditions inside the USSR was a standard -- it was important at that time for Americans to recognize the benefits of the Soviet system, especially for labor -- May Day was an important holiday, a day for "Workers of the the world to unite!".

Connections between the USSR and international labor unions were well known and well understood ... the World Federation of Trade Unions (WFTU) as well as other other union organizations regularly and openly interacted and openly declared their goals to be "communist".

As an aside, I have been attempting to listen to the audio book version of "Enlightenment Now" by Steven Pinker on my travels of the past couple weeks. Pinker is at far reaches of atheist scientism, however because his "rule" is numbers, he finds the fall of communism was a gigantic boon to mans well being.

“The collapse of communism and a recognition of its economic and humanitarian catastrophes took the romance out of revolutionary violence and cast doubt on the wisdom of redistributing wealth at the point of a gun.” (Pinker)
It will be interesting to see how the various leftward forces of socialism and environmentalism shake out on Pinker's paean to "it's the best time to be alive!" Sure we are dying soul-less chemical reactions in a dying entropic universe, but hey, science lets you how to grab for all the gusto you can in ways never before dreamed in human history!

Just because society threw away the old morals doesn't mean it is that easy to come to agreement on new ones ... as the linked review of the book makes very clear.

The "proper NPR view" on Russia has certainly changed since 2012 when BO chided Mittens that "the 1980's called and wanted their foreign policy back". Mittens mistakenly thought Russia was an adversary, BO had to condescend to let him know they were now wonderful allies (2012) ... and must have still been in 2013 when Russia became a "diplomatic ally in Syria" as BO's "Red Line" on chemical weapons was "enforced" via Assad receiving a stern talking to from the Russians. It was also 2013 when the Clinton Foundations receipts of 10's of millions of dollars resulted in the consummation of the Uranium One deal, providing Russia with 20% of the N American uranium reserves.`

One would need a scorecard to keep track of approved NPR attitude toward the Russian Bear if you assumed they were a "news" vs a political organization. So far, given my assumption  that NPR is an arm of the Democrat Party, it is pretty easy -- interaction with Russia approved by, or benefiting a Democrat? Interaction positive, no problem!

Any form of interaction with Russia by Republican? "Collusion", very likely treasonous.

I'm guessing that since NASA is part of the Administrative State, and since the Administrative State retains it's war footing with Trump, the planned launch of BOistan Astronauts to the ISS this summer will meet NPR's test for legitimate interaction with Russia ... as long as Trump doesn't comment on it!

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Tuesday, February 27, 2018

The Benedict Option, Rod Dreher

Link to The Benedict Option, "A strategy for Christians in a post-christian nation".

About 1/3 of the way through the book I realized that I had read another book by Rod Dreher, "How Dante Saved My Life". I enjoyed that book, and my wife actually enjoyed and made it through it as well, which is RARE for "Moose Books". I hope to blog on that book in the future as well, however this one is ABSOLUTELY CRITICAL for anyone who believes that they are a Christian to read.

Rod agrees with me, and I think millions of Christians in the US that we are officially and totally in a post-Christian nation, as well as post Western civilization. This is a new "Dark Age", and as St Benedict, born in 480 decided sometime around 500 as he journeyed to the shadow of once great Rome, now ruled by barbarians, it was time to found a "remnant" to keep the core of the faith, which he did at Norica, and in his "Rule of St Benedict".

As Dreher says; "Professing orthodox biblical Christianity on sexual matters is now thought to be evidence of intolerable bogotry, Conservative Christians have been routed. We are living in a new country" ... one which I label as "BOistan", but the label makes no difference, it is a barbarian nation.

On page 154, Rod quotes from Phillip Reiff: "Barbarians are people without historical memory. Barbarism is the real meaning of contemporaneity. Releasesd from all authoritative pasts, we progress towards barbarism, not away from it.".  I've covered this fact a number of times ... "Closing of the American Mind", "Ideas Have Consequences", and others. Technology is not "advancement", it is just giving monkeys nuclear weapons without theology, philosophy and history. The beginning of wisdom is humility ... and barbarians have none of that!

One of the topics that is explained very well in this book is nominalism, a opposd  to metaphysical realism (see pages 26-29). Metaphysical realism tells us that EVERYTHING that is created has MEANING -- as Charles Taylor would say "It is Enchanted" ... or in philosphical terms "teleological".

This ought not be so hard for us to understand today ... one by one, from phones, to watches, to locks on doors, to thermostats, to labels on products (RFID), more and more of our "objects" have built in "smarts", and are often even "connected". Does it REALLY seem so "magical" that an all powerful God can and does imbdue his creation with sacred meaning?

Well, everyone thought so up until William of Occam in the 1300s. Strangely, Occam thought he was "letting God off the hook" because being linked with his meaningful universe of laws "limited him" ... so Bill decided that the Christian God was to be like the Muslim "god" ... able to call evil good and good evil at his whim -- an issue covered really well (and a bit ironically) in a great book based on a speech by Pope Benedict, "The Regensburg Lecture".

Occam convinced the west that "matter is just matter" -- it has no meaning except that imposed from outside it, so "parts is parts" ... matter (including life) only means whatever we decide -- and as we became atomized individuals, each supposedly "the measure of all things", we arrived at "my view is just as good as yours (and of course I think BETTER), so I'll call it whatevery I want -- cells, tissue, a baby, etc ... it's ALL UP TO ME!)

This book is WAY too rich for me to cover the MANY great points that are well made, a couple key points ...

  • We are in a post-Christian, post-virtue post-civilization age. A "dark age", likely to be FAR worse than the previous one. The World Wars and the Holocaust are likely just "warm ups" -- the ONLY thing our "culture" worships is gratification of the self!
  • "To live "after virtue", then is to dwell in a society that not only can no longer agree on what constitutes virtuous belief and conduct, but also doubts that virtue exists. In a post-virtue society, individuals hold maximal freedom of thought and action, and society itself becomes a collection of strangers each pursuing his own interests under minimal constraints". (p16)
  • People feel they MUST "do things" ... have an affair, have a same sex relationship, etc because they would not be "true to themselves" if they did not. "It is in carnal desire that the modern individual believes that he affirms his individuality. The body must be the true 'subject' of desire because the individual must be the author of his own desire". (p43) 
In the end, this book also gives us at least the start on a "blueprint" to save Western civilization. We don't need to worry about saving Christianity ... God will do that. It just may well not be in "the west' -- as I increasingly believe from books like "The Divine Conspiracy". 

God REALLY means that we have free will! He is NOT going to be giving this or any other generation any huge "signs" to save us -- he gave us Christ and the Bible, as well as his divine and teleological creation pregnant with meaning. If we seek him, we WILL find him -- because as long as we are not actively turning our back on him as our current civilization is, it is absolutely not his will that ANY should perish -- UNLESS THEY ABSOLUTELY WANT TO! ... and it seems abundantly clear that the bulk of the people in the west DEARLY want to perish on their own terms, and in many cases, as rapidly as possible! 

I'll reluctantly close with this from page 234 ... 

"The mind of technological man cannot resist his hearts deires, because he has been trained by his culture not to question them. .... The Christian must rebel against this. The only impregnable fortress is metaphysical, the conviction that meaning transcends ourselves and is grounded in God. There are boundaries beyound which we cannot go if we want to live." 

We Christians need to build a lot of small communities following something like the Rule of St Benedict. Please read this book, contact me, and let's try to be the leaven ... Dreher gives us many ideas on on existung heroes of God already doing this work. 

Sunday, February 25, 2018

Barbie, Legos, Open Source, and "Assault Rifles"

Why millions of Americans — including me — own the AR-15 - Vox:

A rather long but well done article that will clue on in on all they want to know about "Assault Rifles".

Like most things on the left, "Assault Rifle" is a complete misnomer, the AR stands for "Armalite Rifle" and was designed by Eugene Stoner ... who one of my old neighbors got to work with at one point. "Assault" vs "Defense" is also a ridiculous distinction. The AR is THE modern sporting rifle platform, as the article goes into in detail. It is NOT "full auto", but rather semi-auto like pretty much all modern hunting rifles (and handguns).

I own a Bushmaster AR as well as a Kel Tec that are "black guns". I also own a couple Ruger 10-22s (one of the most common .22s) as well as a Remington 742 woodsmaster. Other than "styling", they are all the same, but as any current or previous owner of a Barbie will tell you, styling IS important!

As in Legos or Open Source software, the "styling" lets one mix and match parts between ARs allowing one platform to be used for a brush gun, long range prairie dog gun, or with a different caliber barrel setup, even a real BIG game rifle like grizzly. PLUS, since it "feels the same", you have the muscle memory to be at home with any of them as soon as you pick them up ... my 742 30-06 "feels" a lot different than an AR, but I can put a 30 round or more magazine in it just like my Bushmaster.

"Why does anyone want to own an AR?" ... like why do you want to own a flat screen TV or a car with a backup camera? The AR is the standard modern sporting arm for very good reasons -- MODULARITY being a huge one. The article covers all that if you care. If you don't shoot, or just shoot trap or deer hunt with your pops 30-30, you may just not know -- like your typical Windows user has no clue about Open Source.

News at 11, the current "discussion" is all politics and virtue signalling, which are increasingly the same thing. No such discussion after Vegas, because let's face it, Country Music fans are largely "deplorable", so nobody really cares. Drug ODs and suicides are at record highs, but again, nobody cares -- "The Party" (TP-D) and it's wholly owned media could care less about those deaths, let alone the 4-6K black youth who kill each other in our 20 or so TP controlled major cities each year. No story there folks, move along ... instead, we have a bunch of kids being used as props rather than eating Tide Pods this week.

Is it a tragedy that 17 kids are killed by a mentally ill kid that did pretty much everything up to and including screaming to authorities "I'm really sick and I'm going to shoot up a school!!!". Well yes, but when we live in a country where the cops wait in the parking lot for the gunfire to die out,  and the FBI is too busy texting about how much they hate Trump, it doesn't really seem that we REALLY need to blame the NRA for any reason other than they are "the usual suspects" for the left.

If TP cared about lives, they could stop abortion and have a few more million kids to trot out and whimper ... oops, those kids are dead already, but we don't care about them!

Keep your minds right sheeple!

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Monday, February 12, 2018

FISAgate, "No Reasonable Prosecutor"

Grassley Graham Memo Affirms Nunes Memo on FISA & Steele Dossier | National Review:

The jury is in on the FBI branch of the DNC deciding to go after Trump to hopefully defeat him in the election, and failing that, to remove him from office as they are working on now.

The column goes into detain on exactly WHY it is completely insane to assume that you can wiretap a private citizen based on the "evidence" put forward by the FBI to FISA. In America, we had STANDARDS of justice that allowed people of multiple political viewpoints to believe that they would be treated fairly by our law enforcement and judicial branches INDEPENDENT of their politics.

The whole concept of the "Red Scare" and the dreaded "McCarthyism" was that Communists were supposedly being treated differently on the basis of their "politics", that isn't TOO hard to understand, given that their "political beliefs" tended to include the "total overthrow of the corrupt US Capitalist system and it's replacement by a system safely under Communist control". Which is pretty hard to distinguish from treason. Never mind, Saul Alinsky, the founder of Community Organizers  (BO's previous gig) and the role model that Hillary Clinton based her masters thesis on shared that view of what ought to happen to the US.

At one level, it is easy to understand that after the destruction of America, the powers that be in BOistan would view anyone not holding membership in "The Party" (TP-D) to be a "subversive". Why, there is no limit to the kind of horrors such people could wreak on innocent BOistanis ... allowing prayer in school, protecting the unborn, rewarding work for a days pay, maintining some sort of borders ... the list is endless! BOistan could be destroyed!

The thing about centralized state control though is that (amazingly), pretty much everyone working for the centralized state and paying into the appropriate government unions is quite saavy about being on board with lots of state power (and money) right away! We humans have a sixth sense for knowing which side our bread is buttered on!

The whole article is worth a read for sure, but the following quote is key -- in America, it would be IMPOSSIBLE to get a FISA warrant given the lack of evidence. The fact they got it means that THIS IS NOT AMERICA!

 "This is not esoterica. In the investigations biz, this is so basic that to call it “Warrants 101” doesn’t do it justice. If you don’t have witnesses with verifiable, first-hand knowledge, you don’t have anything. Without them, to borrow Director Comey’s notorious dictum, no reasonable prosecutor would bring a warrant application to a federal judge, and no reasonable judge would issue a warrant."
It is hard for most people, never having realized that their country died and was replaced while they were watching TV and texting to imagine what has happened here. I see a good analogy as being the neighbors 6 year old kid comes over and says that "My mom and dad have turned into zombies", so you believe him, and go over and shoot them dead. When the cops show up, they say "oh, zombies again, just keep quiet about it, we don't want to alarm anyone", and nothing ever shows up on the news.

Just replace "zombies" with "republicans" and that is pretty much FISAgate.

Andrew McCarthy, the author of the linked article is an honorable guy -- a guy that apparently believed well beyond me that the FBI and FISA court could not possibly be as corrupt as it looked. He closes with this ...

I spent many months assuring people that nothing like this could ever happen — that the FBI and Justice Department would not countenance the provision to the FISA court of uncorroborated allegations of heinous misconduct. When Trump enthusiasts accused them of rigging the process, I countered that they probably had not even used the Steele dossier. If the Justice Department had used it in writing a FISA warrant application, I insisted that the FBI would independently verify any important facts presented to the court, make any disclosures that ought in fairness be made so the judge could evaluate the credibility of the sources, and compellingly demonstrate probable cause before alleging that an American was a foreign agent. 
I was wrong.

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Sunday, February 11, 2018

Beliefs Are Dark And Terrifying

An insider explains how rural Christian white America has a dark and terrifying underbelly:

In the eternal sense, my title is REALLY true. Every one of us carries a VERY fundamentalist belief that either:

A. We have an eternal soul, and the issue of eternity is far larger than whatever we think is interesting in these 4 score and 10 years on this rock.

B. No soul, no god, no meaning -- whoever is smartest, most smug, gets the most votes, has the most fun, etc is "king". It really doesn't matter -- "grab for all the gusto you can". Most of all, be smug while doing it!

The author of the linked column is clearly in the B column big time -- his belief is very strong, and there is no way he is buying into "the fear of God is the BEGINNING of wisdom". He has reversed the Biblical injunction that "a fool says there is no God" to be "a foot says there IS a God!".

Par for the course for human behaviour -- this guy doesn't say it, but I heard it again recently, "to think you have an immortal soul is the height of hubris". Possibly ... the "height of human hubris" is a big stinking pile, that is for sure. Thinking that YOU can define the "height of human hubris" doesn't really sound all that humble to me all on it's own. Peak hubris? It certainly begins with KNOWING that "man is the measure of all things'.

The column is all about those "dangerous, racist, Christian Fundamentalist, angry rural whites, and their closed systems". I suppose that American university campuses that are creating rules to label anything that doesn't agree with them as "hate speech" would be "open minded" for this author. Again, "closed minded" people are really not a trick to find in any crowd -- they tend to be every bit as common as hubristic people.

The key is naturally LABELS ... your hubristic closed minded "whatevers" are of course "right" and "ok" ... "righteous even", while the other tribe ... well, not so good. Let's just say "deploreable".

I'm absolutely certain that the author can find white christians in fly-over country that DO meet every single negative stereotype he has to pile on them. To the extent they are Christians, they would be less than perfect ones -- which is the unfortunate state of 100% of us. However, when it comes to seeking to be like the only divinely perfect human in history, the height of the bar should be at least checked!

Do not judge lest ye be judged and love your enemies would be good places to start for Christians.

Let's use alcoholism vs being gay as an example ... sin is sin, it makes no difference. It is possible to love your alcoholic spouse, sibling or child and hate their sin?  It is even possible for realize that controlling their sin is HARD ... they have a strong desire of alcohol, however it is killing them. You DON'T have to judge their behavior ... you can just love them and do all you can to help (rather than enable) them.

Even if the alcoholic is your "worst enemy" ... the author of the column for example (I'm joking), or a jihadist wearing a bomb -- they are fellow humans with eternal souls and in light of eternity it is almost believeable that they are possible to love! Without eternity, the author is right. Why would anyone even consider "loving" a deplorable that is obviously wrong, evil, racist, etc?

That's the bar for Christians on how to think about folks like the author of this column. What is the "bar" for his closed minded tribe? I think "might is right" pretty much covers it.

 I don't mean to be demeaning, ALL people are closed minded about their beliefs! I had some folks get REALLY nasty with me in the early '80s when I told them that I thought the USSR **WOULD** be "consigned to the ash heap of history". Their certainly that I was completely insane was at least as certain as the column author of his rightness. The "experts" had all spoken, how dare I, a mere computer programmer question them!

In deep-red America, the white Christian god is king, figuratively and literally. Religious fundamentalism has shaped most of their belief systems. Systems built on a fundamentalist framework are not conducive to introspection, questioning, learning, or change. When you have a belief system built on fundamentalism, it isn’t open to outside criticism, especially by anyone not a member of your tribe and in a position of power. The problem isn’t that coastal elites don’t understand rural Americans. The problem is that rural America doesn’t understand itself and will never listen to anyone outside its bubble. It doesn’t matter how “understanding” you are, how well you listen, what language you use…if you are viewed as an outsider, your views will be automatically discounted. I’ve had hundreds of discussions with rural white Americans and whenever I present them any information that contradicts their entrenched beliefs, no matter how sound, how unquestionable, how obvious, they will not even entertain the possibility that it might be true. Their refusal is a result of the nature of their fundamentalist belief system and the fact that I’m the enemy because I’m an educated liberal.
'The author is to modest in his application of  "belief systems". ALL beliefs, held by ANYONE are resistent to change! His, mine, EVERYONES. Trying to convince an atheist there IS a God is at least as hard as trying to convince a believer that there isn't. Trying to convince BO that fracking was drastically going to lower gas prices was just as hard in 2012 as trying to convince this guy that there are MANY Bible believing Christians that are every bit as "well informed" as he is! ALL of our belief systems are built on SOMETHING that we consider to be "fundamental".

Philisophy says that science MUST be falsifiable, or it isn't science (it can only be inductively true ... as fragile as the next experiemt)  ... which means that if you are scientist, you can't use science to support ANY "belief" at all!

Oh, and BTW, if your belief system says that there is no meaning to the universe beyond pleasure, deciding that adultry is OK, gay sex is OK, transgenderism is OK ... and whatever they think of next is not "change", it is "more of the same". Much of what the left calls "progress" is the same as "I was drinking pint a day, now I'm drinking a 5th! See, I'm making PROGRESS!"

For us “coastal elites” who understand evolution, genetics and science, nothing we say to those in flyover country is going to be listened to because not only are we fighting against an anti-education belief system, we are arguing against god. You aren’t winning a battle of beliefs with these people if you are on one side of the argument and god is on the other. No degree of understanding this is going to suddenly make them less racist, more open to reason and facts. Telling “urban elites” they need to understand rural Americans isn’t going to lead to a damn thing because it misses the causes of the problem.
Nobody "wins" a "battle of beliefs" -- that is what we have elections and wars for. If you want to NOT have to have wars, having a shared set of transcendent beliefs that we could agree on, "like "all men are created equal (before God), endowed by their CREATOR with certiain UNALIENABLE rights".

Your "god" may be the sanctity of gay sex, killing babies in the womb, legal pot for all or just "if it feels good do it", but it is YOUR GOD ... you are exactly as "open minded" to changing your view on those things as I am willing  to decide that a few thousand year old religion which billions have based their life on is "wrong". You have your pleasure to worship, I have my God that I "bitterly cling to". In my system, I need to attempt to love you, in yours, however you run over me is A-ok.

No God, nothing "unalienable" ... all just POWER. Ballot box or bullets, take your pick -- and guys like this author are not very excited about accepting the outcome of elections that don't go their way these days!
When a 2,700-year-old book that was written by uneducated, pre-scientific people, subject to translation innumerable times, and edited with political and economic pressures from popes and kings, is given higher intellectual authority than facts arrived at from a rigorous, self-critical, constantly re-evaluating system that can and does correct mistakes, no amount of understanding, respect or evidence is going to change their minds and assuage their fears.
Yes, godless human sytems have made a few "mistakes", but hey, that is a FEATURE! All fixed now ... well, unless you are one of the 60 million aborted babies so far.

Nazism did in 6 million nasty Jews that were one of those "old closed system" people ... one wonders if the column author sees that as a bug or a feature? Perhaps just something needing a "correction"?

Communism did in over 100 million in the last century ... many of those that had to be killed there were "closed minded", unwilling to see the brilliance of "the state" ... again, lots of Jews and Christians. If you read the whole column you really get the feeling that there just isn't much way to deal with people who won't bow to "science".  (Lysenkoism is a worthy rememberance of always listiening to your state sponsored "experts") Perhaps forcing closed minded religous people to work on top notch state science projects like Chernobyl would open their minds?

Mao's "Great Leap Forward"? North Korea's nuke program? Godless humans have such a wonderful track record, the hicks in fly over country are really untrusting of the coastal elites expertise! Abortion is one of the current shining examples of how godless elites respect "the least of these".

Yes, beliefs CAN be "dark and terrifying". It is really a matter of what you see as a "nightmare".

Gulags, death camps, 60 million aborted, or some states not forcing everyone to celebrate gay "marriages" and "honor" 57 genders and counting?

Oh, the horror.

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Wednesday, February 07, 2018

BO In The Know

FBI lovers' latest text messages: Obama 'wants to know everything' | Fox News:

Watergate was about "What did the president know and when did he know it?" ... Since there was 20 min of tape missing it was ASSUMED that he was covering up that "he knew". Oh, and the media as well as the then much less willing to be obvious Democrat State hated Nixon, so he just had to go.

At least we don't have to wonder if BO was inolved in using the FBI to attack the opposition party during the 2016 election ... we have it on text!

Newly revealed text messages between FBI paramours Peter Strzok and Lisa Page include an exchange about preparing talking points for then-FBI Director James Comey to give to President Obama, who wanted “to know everything we’re doing."
Naturally, anyone paying attention has only know that the FBI (and all government) - media collaboration is "business as usual". No reason to call it "collusion" -- come on, it has been obvious since Watergate, but if you are old enough to remember Dan Rather destroying his career using fake documents to "prove" the fake story about how good a fighter pilot W may have been 30 years ago.

The BO birth certificate and the story that W was supposedly not a very good fighter pilot  were similar, however one is NOT requiured to be a "good fighter pilot" to be president, but one at least used to have to be an American citizen to be president!

In the world of fake government agencies and fake news however, "what difference, at this point, does it make?" That was "Herself" Hillary responding to a question about 4 dead, including the US Ambassador to Libya being killed on her watch. Let's face it, relative to the government bureaucracy and the US media, she was right! Nobody cares about US Ambassadors and Navy Seals relative to Hildebeast getting what she wants -- the elite having their way is what BOistan stands for.

What is "new" is how obviously it is now all done. They are STILL certain they hold all the cards and have all the power, players like HillBilly and BO. So they broke all sorts of secrecy laws, obstructed justice, and used federal law enforcement agencies to attack their political opponents? Why not? "Rules" are for the little people ... not the Hillarys and BOs of the world!

The biggest "news" in all of this to me is that we all KNOW how Democrat Party, Administrative State and Media collaboration work against the opposition party. It happens EVERY DAY! Just look at the markets the past few days and think back to '09.

In '09, BAD news was always due to W and GOOD news was always due to BO. Market down, BUSH! Market or anthing else up/good, BO!

Now it is simply the opposite. Markets DOWN (or anything bad), TRUMP! Markets UP (or anything good), BO!

Try to even imagine Trump ordering the FBI to investigate the Democrat candidate in 2020. First of all, like Nixon trying to use the IRS against his political enemies, they would REFUSE ... as well they should! But when BO had the IRS attack conservative groups, they did not refuse -- they DID IT, and then took the 5th and everybody walked away.

Between Watergate and BO, at least the Democrat - Deep State - Media triumvirate had the decency to throw some fig leafs on and deny that they were collaborating! It's in the open now, and neither Democrats at the party or support level care -- they WANT a one party state. They no longer see any advantages in any diversity of ideas -- they are openly shutting down any dissenting ideas being discussed even at a university.

We are ALL largely brainwashed at this point. As evidence, I ask you; What exactly did the Russians **DO** to influence the election????

A few fake Facebook Accounts? Some fake news stories more fake then the many 10's of fake stories that have been exposed on CNN? Which and how many people saw those and were "influenced by them"? Trump supposedly "colluded" to do what? To get more emails from some unsecure Hillary or DNC server released? The Democrat/Deep State/Media triumvirate tells us that "Russian influence in our 2016 election" is a most grevious FACT!

What was that influence, and how many votes did it affect?

The base charge is a JOKE, it is like making an issue about how good a fighter pilot W was. It's a McG
uffin! ... a device to create a story that all the brainwashed will follow.

Here is what REALLY happened!

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Tuesday, February 06, 2018

Working of Democrat State, Clinton - Obama Emails

Hillary Clinton & Barack Obama Emails: Key to Lack of Clinton Indictment | National Review:

In reading the attached, it is important to understand the obvious -- the FBI, other government agencies, elected Democrat officials and "the media" are one seemless entity under Democrat Party control.
Obama had his email communications with Clinton sealed. He did this by invoking a dubious presidential-records privilege. The White House insisted that the matter had nothing to do with the contents of the emails, of course; rather, it was intended to vindicate the principle of confidentiality in presidential communications with close advisers. With the media content to play along, this had a twofold benefit: Obama was able (1) to sidestep disclosure without acknowledging that the emails contained classified information, and (2) to avoid using the term “executive privilege” — with all its dark Watergate connotations — even though that was precisely what he was invoking.
This is the day in and day out operation of the Democrat / Administrative State  / Media  team. All work together to advance THEIR interests as one big happy team dedicated to doing "the right stuff", with "right" defined as "increasing government bureaucratic power, electing more Democrats, and assuming the MSM is the ONLY source of "truthful information".

Now, with an R in the WH, the media / Administrative State teams focus on removal of the R from the WH. It's really a pretty simple operation!

Saturday, February 03, 2018

Facing The Democrat State, FBI Edition

A Reckoning for the FBI - WSJ:

It is sad to see that truths that I have been talking about since the '80's have been fully validated and even at this late date, are being summarily denied by "The Party" (TP-D) and it's fully controlled media and Deep/Administrative State.

The point needs to be made loud and very clear. ALL of our federal, state and local agencies have been completely corrupted by the unholy connection of unionization and single party partisan politics! If you are not able to see this to be true, you are willfully blind to it, or have simply paid no attention to events for a VERY long time! ("willfull blindness" in my book includes using only "mainstream media news" as your information source, and "news" in this context must be taken VERY lightly)

Whatever your opinion on unions, one thing is very very clear, they are a construction of left wing ideology. They assert that "workers of the world must unite!", no matter who they work for! The original idea was "labor vs capital" -- employers were "capitalists", thus "expoiting" workers making a free choice to work for pay, so the workers needed to unite to "collectively" become a greater "force".

That force involves strikes and often violence. Picket lines are created; people who are more than willing to work at the jobs which the strikers are refusing to do are called "scabs", threatened and sometimes even killed. How you feel about unions is strongly influenced by what you have been taught -- as you think of that, realize that pretty much 100% of the teachers at all grade levels including university in the US are union members. Unless you have had a VERY unusual teacher, or done some significant work on your own, you no doubt believe at a minium that "unions are neccessary".

I'm not going to make a full treatsie of the whole history of unions here -- they are left wing, they are collectivist, I think we can leave it at that. As long as it was "capital vs unions", it was a battle that was at least understandable, but "government vs unions"? Government is ALREADY a collective, and at least in theory, working for the government was once a matter of "service". Like becoming a missionary for your church, you "believed" in "the call" of government service, so you unselfishly signed up, knowing that you would be living on your neighbors dime, and would thus always be on the lower side of a middle class lifestyle.

No longer.
Overall, total compensation for federal workers was 17 percent higher, on average, than for comparable workers in the private sector during 2011-2015, CBO found. It was 16 percent higher for the period of 2005-2010, the budget office found in its earlier study.
There is no question that "collective action" can work, and work extremely well ... organized crime, drug cartels, OPEC, The International Communist Workers Party, and our subject for today, The FBI Agents Association , have been and are, EXTREMELY effective! The question is how many different organizations should be allowed to do collective shakedowns, and if those shakedowns should have any limits.

Who do unions support? According to Open Secrets, DEMOCRATS ... $60 millon to $8 million in 2016, but anyone that doesn't know that already is so willfully blind that they have stopped reading by now.

How about the media? According to Politico, a not particularly partisan news outlet, 7% of journalists identify has Republican. BTW, the linked article is very good on WHY the media bubble has swung more and more leftward, even recently -- answer, more efficency do to cost constraint, so localizing media people in big urban centers has increased, with expected results.

Nothing in "the memo" is new to people that have been paying attention. The FBI went out of it's way to not prosecute it's own candidate Hillary, then moved many of the same hyperpartisan "investigators" over as "insurance" that Trump would not be elected, and if he was, they could at least hamstring him with being put under immediate "investigation", if not impeached. The memo is another piece of documentation of the obvious -- TP controls the internal structure of the government and 90%+ of the media that "reports" on it. TP is at war with Trump and anyone who fails to bend their knee to TP.

The ONLY way out of this is:

  1. SMALLER GOVERNMENT -- government is inherently left leaning. Our founders created a constitution to resist the constant growth of government until if choked out the last vestiges of liberty. 
  2. Outlaw government unions -- Even FDR was not a fan of public unions. If government workers don't trust the government to be "just", then they really ought not work there. 
  3. Re-establish a strong centrist media -- people that ACTUALLY believe that an informed rather than propagandized public is critical to returning to a Democratic Republic from the failed state of BOistan. This is a HUGE undertaking!
  4. Kill the "consumer" identity and establish our core value as excellence, competitiveness, goodness .,.. something, ANYTHING other than "consumers". 

If there is hope, it is hope of the very long haul! Much as the election of Trump, let us hope that "the memo" is one more small step on the trail.

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Friday, February 02, 2018

Groundhog Day, Again

The moose is a forgetful traditionalist -- I started this "tradition" in 2016, than apparently failed to do it in 2017. Groundhog day is a celebration of repetition for me -- with subtle modifications. I make some updates to the old post that are hopefully improvements ... I do that regularly to many posts in my blog. It is a labor of love for me, not a historical record.

Follow the link, and read / re-read the old yet slightly new post, and certainly the base Goldberg post as well at least if you never have. Oh, if you have not watched the movie, DO IT!

Bless this Groundhog Day, as Bill Murray finally learned to bless the day and thus moved forward to the next.