Saturday, October 22, 2016

Abandon all Faith.

I can hardly condemn people for getting much if not most of their news from the Internet. It's efficient, you can read many sources quickly and you don't have to sit through all those TV commercials or deal with all that newsprint. That's why you're here, right?  The problem is, obviously, that for every legitimate news report there are uncountable sources of propaganda, slanted news and totally fabricated lies. Unless you're just looking for laughs you tend to believe them because you want to. We all want our prejudices, or as we like to call them, our principles, to be confirmed. Indeed far too many of us log on first thing in the morning desperately seeking outrage, scandal and condemnation. It's like a strong cup of coffee to get us going, and as with all things, where there is a demand, there arises a supply. It's called the Internet.
There are web pages that closely mimic the major outlets and unless you look closely you may think you've logged in to or a legitimate newspaper. There are all sorts of web sources attached as supporting links on the things you get on Facebook or in email demonstrating that whatever it is you don't like is a fraud, fake or a harbinger of doom. Many are just more propaganda, many don't even exist.
But there are all sorts, put up by all sorts of organizations or individuals or political parties. My opening delight this morning was labeled as World News and in the wildest of hysterical terms proves that Hillary Clinton hates and wants to persecute Christians:


Screeches the headline. a misquoted menu of quotes mrom Mrs. Clinton proving this premise follows. Why this found its way to me, I don't know, being a cynical and fairly well informed atheist, but the claimed 277,000 "shares" means others welcomed the chance to feed the addiction, to feed the Hillaryhate, that newest branch of the Clintonhate religion that dates to Bill's first campaign. Of course none of those predictions or maledictions came true and Bill may have been the most successful president in our history, but faith never dies, nor do lies  and they're still predicting all sorts of horrors that never happened then and won't happen now. One of those things is the persecution of Christians.
The writers of News World Politics may or may not believe this idiocy, but they know you desperately need it as a vampire needs blood and the people who pay them make their living from your fear and hate and other psychological problems you like to call Christianity. What you may depend on for your identity and self respect along with your Confederate pretense, your sense of biological superiority and your guns.
It's not going to die, it's not going to go away and it will continue like a cancer in America no matter that it's fake and like the "tax and spend" meme, the Gun Grabber meme, the "spread the wealth" calumny, it's designed to make you abandon your faith in America. Can you imagine what kind of people with what kind of motivation are behind this? That's not too hard, is it?

Thursday, October 13, 2016

America and Its Fears

What are we so afraid of, we Americans?  Everything it seems. Everything is too dangerous, nothing is nearly safe enough now that life is safer in America than it ever has been. We live longer than Americans ever have. We're less likely do be murdered, to die in a car accident or shot in a robbery. Sure, the progress isn't smooth and it affects us erratically, but the things certain to kill us are heart disease, Cancer, organ failure and complications of Diabetes. We're making progress on those things, but yet we have Americans terrified of  the very remote chance of  a pressure cooker bomb but who smoke, text while driving and are 150 pounds overweight.  We are now and always have been irrational creatures, reluctant and even afraid to base our actions and opinions on objectivity. On that fact are our political passions based.

A survey by Chapman University results in a list of what Americans fear most and by far, the largest concern is corrupt government officials. Nearly 61% tagged this as their biggest fear.  Is government so much more trustworthy than it was in my childhood when nearly everyone trusted the government?  Does it correlate to any actual increase in corruption over the days of Nixon and Agnew?  It's easy to dredge up lists of the worst presidents using Google, but basically any premise can be supported with Google searches and any president shown to be corrupt, but so much of it is motivated by political objectives.  Near the top of the list of the search I just did is titled Obama: The Most Corrupt and America-Hating President in US History  That's seriously untrue and there also seems to be an odd correlation between popularity and the reality of a president's term in office. What you blame them for or credit them with says more about your prejudices than their principles.

But next on the fear list is "terrorist attack," fear of which seems loosely linked to risk statistics. more than 40% of are afraid of swarthy invaders with bombs. Should I suspect that people a hundred years ago were just as afraid of Bolsheviks  and Wobblies and Anarchists with just as little reason? But of course nearly as many are afraid or very afraid of Obamacare. 38 1/2% are afraid of gun control. 37 1/2 % are very afraid of economic collapse.

Not all fears are unwarranted at all, more than a third of us are afraid of losing a loved one, of not having enough money in the future. These are real possibilities, but fear of irrecoverable economic collapse seems less so and our record of predicting such things seems laughable. We've had 8 years of panic about the imminent collapse and before that 8 years of denial of the probability and at present, we can't agree whether we're in a bull or bear market even if the Dow has gone from 7000 to over 18000 in 92 months of increase.

To fear is human and animal too, for that matter, and evolution has predisposed us to worry too much than too little, but so much of what we fear and the degree to which we fear it is the result of deliberate action and the actions of opinion makers and fear mongers; scam artists and profiteers. On the internet we find as much support for a flat earth, a 7 day creation and the fraud behind the Pythagorean Theorem as we do for   Obama: The Most Corrupt and America-Hating President in US History or for Hillary Clinton as liar, thief and murderer and like the cowards we are and are trained to be, we select the scariest, not the most plausible or the most supported by facts. We do the same with the promises of politicians.  Ask yourself whether you really believe your candidate can hope to do more than give lip service to the Utopian visions he describes or whether in fact anyone could given the complexities of government. Do you really?  Do you think your 4 door Nissan sedan is a race car like the commercial says it is or whether women will swoon over your "crossover?"  And if we elect politicians on such a basis and we look at or overlook their performance with the same selective eye, whose fault is it?

Monday, October 10, 2016

Locker Room Talk, misogyny and cover ups.

It's evidently difficult for Americans to tell an unsupported assertion from a hypothesis based on evidence. That's more true than it ever has been because we have the Internet to support anything no matter how insupportable.  All it takes to launch a cult is a plausible assertion and an anecdote, neither of which has to have any basis in reality at all as long as it satisfies that old human passion for conspiracy, bigotry and the hunting of witches.

Normally I avoid dressing conjecture up as a campaign, but the gloves have been off for quite a while and it's hard to take too much more of Hillary-Killary-Shillary who flies around on a broom and has been making all major policy decisions for the Federal government for 30 years. The search for things to attack her with is so desperate that when the supply wanes, the demand for fiction will bring creative results. No exoneration no matter how rigorous or lengthy or hostile can overcome the certainty of her universal guilt of something and everything.

So here it is: Donald J. Trump has gender issues and he's afraid you'll find out.. What he calls his love of beauty and what he calls "Locker Room" talk are ego defenses covering up the inner Donald who is afraid of and perhaps even disgusted by women.  He seems horrified by the fact that women need toilet facilities, that they menstruate. If he is indeed attracted to women, or if he just uses them as props, they must be young and beautiful in the extreme so as not to allow any question as to his machismo and of course to flatter his fragile narcissistic ego. I've never heard such exaggerated raunchiness in a locker room unless it's by 14 year old boys full of fear and lust and sexual frustration but eager to seem like men. Real men don't talk that way. Real men don't call their daughters "pieces of ass." Donald is not a real man.

Trump needs to think you see him as an icon of manhood and to him that means demonstrating dominance and control over women while asserting that women can't resist him and not just for his money. If they do, it's because they're fat and ugly and crooked and disgusting and have no judgement.  How could they if they're not fawning all over them as he gropes and grabs.  Feeling like the man for Donald means bragging and the right to feel contemptuous. It means arrogance and I suspect the roots of arrogance lie in a hidden sense of humiliation. How can I not suspect that like Hitler, a fulfilling relationship with a woman was impossible.

And speaking of Hitler- that's right, I said the gloves were off, didn't I?

Saturday, October 08, 2016

The Greater Groper

Back when America was great, or at least when Humpty Trumpty suggests it was, America was about free trade and open borders, the business of America was business and laissez faire Capitalism was King. That's sort of the message I get from Clinton's "secret" speeches, you know the ones that show she's in league with the minions of free market Capitalism. How the hell did it come about that a truly rapacious freebooter who wants to destroy banks and financial institutions like a Bolshevic's wet dream, who thinks he has the right to grope your wife for sport, who doesn't believe in paying his bills and has cheated his way to the top is the champion not only of the GOP but of the people he routinely screws? So she suggests that bankers and brokers and the like know best how "Wall Street" should be regulated, that's not saying they should be given the power to self-regulate. It's saying that they know what's going on better than congress or you for that matter. The Trumpshevics hope you think so, but then they just assume you're dumb and uneducated, mad as hell and half drunk. Go ahead, scream about Killary, you idiots, you'll be first on the bread line.

Sunday, October 02, 2016

I've Fallen into a Madhouse and I Can't Get Out

There's no denying that this election has brought out the worst in all of us. Listening to man-on-the-street interviews with Trump supporters makes me want to run for the border: to some place not populated by armed and enraged thugs far more dangerous than the Zombies in any of the popular movies and TV series. But the Hillary, Killary, Shillary Billary idiots who are helping with their irrational perceptions and their cultivated ignorance are only making it more possible for the neo-nazis and atavistic ape-men (and women) shit-face drunk on slogans and murderous memes and animal rage to destroy our country as fast and as thoroughly as any nuclear exchange, although it would be foolish to rule that out too.

How do you argue with people who would choke to death rather than relinquish the false comparisons, false equivalences like comparing the not-even-legal Trump foundation to the Clinton Foundation and dismissing both candidates as "Proven liars."  No one can truly that stupid and I can only explain it as being pathological.

That's not to say Americans aren't living in their hermetic little worlds, giving equal weight to matters of student loans and modes of address as against Nuclear brinksmanship and the likely failure of  Western civilization. We sound like 300 million birds on a very long wire, tweeting memememememememe.  Selfishness, narrow mindedness and the blindness of rage: Ignorance is strength.