Friday, May 19, 2017

A sense of horror hanging in the air

While the show continues to go on - complete with ever more frantic, ever more speciously sourced leaks (we're at anonymous quotes of secondhand information about unconfirmed targets now), I think a certain sense of worry is starting to descend on our would-be ruling class. Specifically, that whatever story is playing out right now, it's not really following the script they've written.

Shades of the campaign all over again. Remember, when Trump was near-universally condemned for his comments about illegal immigration - that we weren't exactly getting heaps of law-abiding America Firsters crossing the border - there was this certain *script* that was supposed to be followed. Everyone on TV would condemn him, he'd apologize, the country would hate him, and then Jeb Bush would waddle his to a primary win. Or maybe Rubio.

Of course, that's not what went off. In fact, we had a whole primary campaign season of called shots by experts and elites, hardly a one of which landed, until the final insult was delivered courtesy of Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin. The crazy ol' bastard won, and his Deplorables had a champion.

So, after recount attempts and defecting elector attempts and more all went awry, a new strategy was cooked up: impeachment. Scandal. It'll be like Nixon all over again! The media will play along, they hate this guy. The GOP elite will play along too - THEY hate this guy!

What's unspoken is the fact that one more group needs to play along: Trump's supporters.

And they don't seem willing to budge.

Really, the utter skepticism (even contempt) of lurid accounts of Russian entanglements and obstruction of justice are regarded with a combination of disbelief and apathy by a large section of Trump's supporters. Oh, he worked with the Russians to fuck the DNC? Prove it. And more than that, who gives a shit? The DNC isn't the loyal opposition, kids; they're a group of people who despise the GOP. Oh, but it's improper to rely on foreign agents to influence elections? Funny, the Democrats seemed quite at home with that strategy - see illegal immigration and fervent hostility to vote fraud investigations.

That people honestly think lurid tales of Putin will stir some kind of anti-Trump revolt. You can practically hear Egg McMuffin talking to his hirers. "These guys love Rambo, and they hate Russia! They still think Russians are communists!" Lo' and behold, not so much. At least not enough to make then entertain the thought of going all in on what is plainly a coup attempt.

Hard to blame them, anyway. What will they get out of it? "Restore dignity to the office of the Presidency?" Go fuck yourselves. We just had 8 years of a wannabe autocrat (who probably was born in Kenya anyway, and was either an atheist or a muslim and lying about it) sympathizing with black rioters and talking about how justified shooting victims 'could have been his son'. It was almost won by the world's least accomplished and most corrupt female politician since Marcos. But the black tie soirees will have more dignity with someone other than Trump in there? Tough.

Which leaves us in a situation, which is starting to look like a cook who notices the frog has left the pot, and is trying to tempt him back in by lighting the rest of the kitchen on fire. Make it hot enough, fast enough, and surely the frog will regard the pot as the best place in town, right? Surely the frog will do so before the fire's out of control and the whole kitchen is going to burn to the ground, right?

Stay tuned.

Sunday, May 14, 2017

The Requirements of Religious Freedom And the Proposition Nation

Claim: Religious freedom in America requires that religious traditions be given protections, even if most of society finds their beliefs and practices wrong/superstitious/even harmful.

Problem: Many muslims practice child marriage and justify it on religious grounds.

Conservatives and Liberals argue whether this means we must allow child marriage for all, or religious freedom for few/none.

The alt-right humbly suggests: maybe we shouldn't let people who practice that come to the US to begin with so this question is moot.

Being direct: it's obvious that some cultures and religious practices are utterly incompatible with American government. Why does no one admit this?

Now and then the argument surfaces about the 'proposition nation' where you can identify an American by the set of values they espouse and ideas they cling to, and these ideas can be had everywhere - from Bangladesh to Taiwan. But I don't think anyone takes this idea seriously. If they did, I'd have a question for them: what do you do with those American citizens who do not subscribe to that supposedly sacred list of ideas? If we're a proposition nation, and a lot of citizens reject those 'propositions', what then?

It's hard to get an answer for this, and it's clear why: we'll have to conclude our nation has been invaded. The Proposition Nation is occupied by people who reject the propositions, and these bastards are voting in our elections. They're even promoting their ideas above and against our nation.

Unless... we water down the Holy Propositions sufficiently. Enough to make sure that America's muslim and Somalian refugees, latin American illegal immigrants, west coast liberals and Trump supporters all accept the same propositions.

Not coincidentally, this also seems like the surest way to destroy a proposition nation.

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

A question for Ben Shapiro

Lest I take aim too much at W4, a simple question for the Shapiro-minded.
Our interests ought to prevail because our principles ought to prevail: limited government, individual liberty, God-given natural rights, localism in politics, religious freedom, freedom of speech and of the press, and so forth. If America ceased to believe those things or stand for them, we would not deserve to win.
Stirring words. I can mean that, you know; I can find some value in them.

But think about what this means on the local level.

Do we disown our family members for disagreeing with us about limited government, individual liberty, God-given natural rights, localism, religious freedom, freedom of speech?

Does Shapiro disown American jews who are pro-abortion, pro-big-government, and reject God's existence altogether, and more? (Hint: this is going to mean a whole lot of jews.)

Do American blacks, who are overwhelmingly opposed to the lion's share of that list, 'deserve to lose'? I bet you can come up with some creative interpretations of God's immanent justice if you walk down THAT little path.

I do not believe in utter clannishness. I believe there are limits to family loyalty, and tribal loyalty. I believe in kindness, by default, to those outside of one's 'tribe'. But there are limits because there are tight bonds to begin with. Shapiro knows them, and embraces them - ferociously. Our family and our tribe is our responsibility. If they are lost, we may fight them. We may even cast them out. But they are ours to look after - we do what we can to protect them, and to guide them right, and to keep that from happening.

Shapiro suggests a world where this is wrong - and worse, it's wrong for everyone BUT he and his. He and his go by a different set of rules, different considerations.

I want the right to look after me and mine as well. Shapiro, and Lydia, and (if more meekly, perhaps) Jeffrey S will snarl and call me names. That will not shake me, since I have this idea in my head that what I am urging people to protect - urging everyone to protect, in fact - is worth defending, come what may.

I do not need Ben Shapiro's blessing to do this. No one does. And screaming 'Racist!' or 'Anti-Semite!' does not change the worthiness of defending those people. Not 'this ideal', but 'these people'.

Now there's an idea that may catch on...

Jeffrey S steps into the ring, does not last a round!

Credit where it's due. Jeffrey S's latest W4 post is a positive development. Or at least an object lesson as to why people like Jeffrey S are bound to either lose entirely, or swap out to the alt-right.

Check out the article. Basically, you have talk of writers who are starting to come around to this idea that America is... distinct. And rather distinct in terms of traditions, heritage, and even... *muttered, voice a little lower* *population* as well. A population which cannot be sacrificed or displaced without America itself being lost, or at least fundamentally transformed, in the process.

So, overtures are made to this simple and basic nationalism. And almost immediately, Shapiro and Goldberg are quoted to rain on this parade, insisting that nationalism means tribal, and loyalty to one's tribe is foul, wicked, and everything wrong with the world.

No one at W4 thinks of asking the obvious in reply - 'Wait, does that mean Israel is retrograde too? Should we shun tribalistic Israelis?'

Anyway, what starts out impressive on Jeff's part quickly turns pathetic. Having attempted to take a stand for the idea that a nation is a group of people (not mere abstract ideas), and that a group of people can be identified by a particular shared culture, language, and - even if things get fuzzy - lineage, the others at W4 move in for the kill.

A few quips about how it cannot *possibly* be the case that some people are more American than others, Jeffrey S remembers his place in the pack, and bows his head submissively:

I'll be the first to push back against a "tribal nationalist" who claims that my Japanese neighbor whose grandparents fought in WWII for this country, a third generation Catholic Mexican family in a southern Texas town, or a newly arrived evangelical immigrant from Kenya can't share American culture or values with me. It is always a question of prudence and careful control of numbers (and the actual process for getting in the country) not to mention the process of assimilation in the schools that helps these disparate groups from around the world become patriotic Americans.

From trumpeting the importance of kin and country, to be the first to defend a newly arrived Kenyan as being a True American. Poor guy. He didn't even last 24 hours.

Of course, Jeffrey S  tries to cling to at least some of his sentiment. 'Grandparents fought in WWII for this country' (love the qualifier!) 'Third generation Catholic Mexican family'. ... 'Newly arrived evangelical immigrant from Kenya'.

'Careful control of numbers'.

Sadly, I get the sense that Jeffrey S only has to be asked, in sarcastic tone, "Just how many blacks are too many, Jeff?" to have him panic, say "There's never enough!", and then ask David French for adoption agency brochures.

The problem isn't really his qualifications. Can a Japanese person assimilate and be American? I'd say so - though you may want to be careful about that. Can Catholics? I hope so, though at this point it seems like the Catholic Church has a lot to apologize for on that front, especially on the immigration topic. But by the time he's talking about newly arrived Kenyan immigrants 'sharing American culture or values with him', he's given the game away, and he's embraced de facto Proposition Nation talk. Because he's going to get called bad words otherwise, and kin and country aren't worth defending from that kind of ordinance.

Hell, why should that Kenyan even BE an immigrant, Jeff? Are you saying someone in Kenya is 'too African' to share your precious culture? ("David, hurry up with those brochures!!!")

And they wonder why they lose.