Wednesday, June 27, 2012

IT MUST BE NICE TO BE SO ENLIGHTENED

Yuval Levin notices something funny about the political left:
E.J. Dionne says that if the Court overturns any part of Obamacare, “we will need a fearless conversation about how a conservative majority of the court has become a cog in a larger right-wing project to make progressive political and legislative victories impossible.” James Fallows says that “the Roberts majority is barreling ahead without regard for the norms, and it is taking the court’s legitimacy with it.” Yale law professor Akhil Amar thinks the proper outcome is so obvious that if even four justices disagree with him then the Court must be a sham—and he takes it personally. “If they decide this by 5-4,” he told Ezra Klein, “then yes, it’s disheartening to me, because my life was a fraud. Here I was, in my silly little office, thinking law mattered, and it really didn’t. What mattered was politics, money, party, and party loyalty.” Other examples abound this week.

It would be easy to criticize all this for its sheer unselfconscious lack of seriousness: These people are actually saying that any outcome except the one they want must be driven by an outcome-oriented political crusade. Only their view could result from an actual engagement with the question before the Court, and any other view could only be a function of corruption or of cynicism. It must be nice to be so enlightened.[lINKS AT THE ORIGINAL PIECE]

Don't you think it's interesting that they don't seem to notice this about themselves? Or, if you are cynical, then maybe you think that these leftist ideologues do this deliberately and consciously, knowing full well that they are being led by the balls of their postmodern socialist ideology?

It is certainly true that some of them are not at all concerned about the lack of serious intellectual rigor; nor do they have any interest whatsoever of engaging you in any debate about the issues. THE SCIENCE IS SETTLED, don't you know. GLORY TO SOVIET POSTMODERN LEFTIST THOUGHT!

Facts are not important. Neither is reality. For today's left, the name of the game is Rhetoric and controlling the narrative.

Eric Allie captures perfectly the difference between rhetoric and reality in this cartoon:



Obama, the perfect postmodern political President is a master at the art of rhetoric--which is at the heart of all progressive postmodern leftist attempts to obtain and consolidate power.

With postmodern rhetoric you can "talk" tough, but carry a limp stick. You can say whatever your audience at the moment wants to hear and still be philosophically consistent when you do exactly the opposite. Or you can say the opposite to a different audience (just like these guys) since truth is not the objective; only manipulation and deceit to achieve the desired political effect.

It's a sleight of hand known as using "contradictory discourses" and it is a political strategy where truth is rejected explicitly and consistency is an extremely rare phenomenon. As I said, what matters more than truth (or honesty) is achieving the desired political outcome (i.e., getting others to believe what you want them to believe about what you believe).

And, if they don't achieve their policital outcome, then they do not revisit their premises; they only change their rhetoric.

If Obamacare fails, it's not because it's unconstitutional; it's because the court is a bunch of hacks. Or because we are all racists. Or because of Bush. Or all of the previous rationalizations.

They consider themselves so enlightened that it is inconceivable that they could be wrong.

What's important to the postmodern demagogue is the language's effectiveness at achieving the desired result. Stephen Hicks wrote in Explaining Postmodernism[pages 175-177]:
To the modernist, the "mask" metaphor is a recognition of the fact that words are not always to be taken literally or as directly stating a fact--that people largely use language elliptically, metaphorically, or to state falsehoods, that language can be textured with layers of meaning, and that it can be used to cover hypocrisies or to rationalize. Accordingly, unmasking means interpreting or investigating to a literal meaning or fact of the matter. The process of unmasking is cognitive, guided by objective standards, with the purpose of coming to an awareness of reality.

For the postmodernist, by contrast, interpretation and investigation never terminate with reality. Language connects only with more language, never with a non-linguistic reality....

For the postmodernist, language cannot be cognitive because it does not connect to reality, whether to an external nature or an underlying self. Language is not about being aware of the world, or about distinguishing the true from the false, or even about argument in the traditional sense of validity, soundness, and probability. Accordingly, postmodernism recasts the nature of rehtoric. Rhetoric is persasion in the absence of cognition....

Hicks goes on to note that:
Language is a tool of social interaction, and one's model of social interaction dictate what kind of tool language is used as....

And so given the conflict models of social relations that dominate postmodern discourse, it makes perfect sense that to most postmodernists language is primarily a weapon.

This explains the harsh nature of much postmodern rhetoric. The regular deployments of ad hominem, the setting up of straw men, the regular attempts to silence opposing voices are all logical consequences of the postmodern epistemology of language. Stanley Fish, as noted in Chapter Four, calls all opponents of racial preferences bigots and lumps them in with the Ku Klux Klan. Andrea Dworking calls all heterosexual males rapists and repeatedly labels "Amerika" a fascist state. With such rhetoric, truth or falsity is not the issue: what matters primarily is the language's effectiveness.

If we now add to the postmodern epistemology of language the far Left politics of the leading postmodernists and their firsthand awareness of the cirses of socialist thought and practice, then the verbal weaponry has to become explosive.{emphasis mine]

All threats to the effectiveness of their message--and to the perceived threat to their sense of superiority-- must be attacked, and they will scarcely notice the cognitive dissonance required to compare the empty suit with FDR one minute and Ronald Reagan the next. Or, that when the court agrees with them it is a beacon of social justice and an example of truly enlightened consideration; but when the Supremes disagree with their ideology (and stands in the way of their progressive postmodern agenda), the court becomes "a sham" and "illegitimate."

Of course, we shall see tomorrow what the court's decision is about Obamacare. I am sure, that in the end the Justices will make their decision based (as all decisions are based) on their understanding of the law. Could that understanding be flawed? Certainly.

Whenever human beings are involved, you can expect the imperfect; but that doesn't mean we are not capable of wonderful things. Nor does it mean that we should suspend that particular reality and try to change human nature.

In postmodern philosophy and rhetoric, the political left, and the remnants of Marxism, socialism and communismhave found the perfect epistemological, ethical and political vessel to reassert their ideology--an ideology that requires the willing suspension of reality by its adherents to "win the future."

And, it's absolutely inconceivable to these arrogant bastards that the implementation of their perfect progressive, "reality-based" future is always being blocked in some perverse way; or, that they could ever be wrong about anything....

I'm glad that I find it so extremely conceivable.





Tuesday, June 26, 2012

BREAKING A FEW EGGS IN MEXICO FOR THE GREATER GOOD

This is as logical and coherent an explanation of the "Fast and Furious" Obama/Holder scheme as you are likely to find, and I wouldn't be at all surprised if it turns out to be the reason behind the stonewalling of both Holder and Obama.

And remember as you are watching it and thinking, "No, this can't be true....", that Lenin--another well-known ideologue-- was reportedly fond of pointing ou,t as he crafted his perfect utopia, "If You Want to Make an Omelet, You Must Be Willing to Break a Few Eggs.”



Photobucket
[Political cartoons by Jerry Holbert]

Sunday, June 24, 2012

VICTIMHOOD, THE UNKNOWN IDEAL !

From Mark Steyn , writing about Obama's creative invention of himself and his history:
The question now is whether the United States itself is merely the latest chapter of Obama’s fake memoir. You’ll notice that, in the examples listed above, the invention only goes one way. No Cherokee orphan, Holocaust survivor, or recovering drug addict pretends to be George Wallace’s speechwriter. Instead, the beneficiaries of boring middle-class Western life seek to appropriate the narratives and thereby enjoy the electric frisson of fashionable victim groups. And so it goes with public policy in the West at twilight.[Emphasis mine]

Indeed.

Just ask Elizabeth Warren or Ward Churchill. They know that being a member of British Royalty will not get them rapid advancement at Harvard or Yale or any other academic setting.

Just ask George Zimmerman, whose Hispanic heritage was stripped from him because it was tainted with whiteness (and a Germanic last name). Instead he was described as a "White Hispanic"--a non-recognized victim group deserving of little respect.

Even Obama has gone to great pains to make sure that his Blackness is always emphasized, rather than his "white" half (he, at least, is never referred to as a "White Black" person. Nor does he emphasize the fact that his mother's side of the family was reasonably well-to-do. What good would that do him in today's world? What sympathy would that get him--or votes?

In today's world, VICTIMHOOD! is the name of the game.

If you have any doubts about the power and sanctity that can be yours if victimhood status cand be officially confered upon you; or of the endless moral benefits of being "oppressed", just take a look around at the news headlines today and notice who is being cast as "evil oppressors" or the poor, multicultural downtrodden.

And, if there are any conflicts that arise between all the various and diverse victim groups out there (and they are legion), well here's a handy dandy guide to the victimhood food chain.

In the quasi-religious cult of victimhood that is part of today's leftist dogma, "victimhood" has been identified as the key quality deserving of attention and pity and advancement. This is in part because many on the political left have an intense narcissistic need to see themselves as "champions of the oppressed", hence the constant need to find and maintain an oppressed class of people to champion. But it also dovetails nicely into the the Marxist dialectic that underlies that ideology.

According to that ideology, the world is conveniently divided up into two groups: the oppressors (i.e., white, male,heterosexual, conservative, Republican, Americans or Israelis) and the oppressed (everyone else).

For your edification and enjoyment, below is a reprint of "Dr. Sanity's Guide To Victimhood":

A SHORT COURSE ON HOW TO BE A VICTIM

Chapter I: THE ADVANTAGES OF VICTIMHOOD

This brief guide is for those searching for an expedited pathway into the exalted status of Victimhood. Becoming a victim --as we all have learned from famous TV stars, prominent politicians; religions, races, and even nations--is an advantageous state of being in many ways, several of which are:

-You are not responsible for what happened to you
-You are always morally right
-You are not accountable to anyone for anything
-You are forever entitled to sympathy
-You are always justified in feeling moral indignation for being wronged
-You never have to be responsible again for anything

As you can see, these are some heavy-duty privileges; and they are not given to just anyone. This list is not exclusive. There are many benefits of Victimhood; and in our current society, new rewards are continuously being discovered! You, too, may be someone who blazes a new path for future victims!

The badge of victimhood must be "earned" (ha ha, just kidding!) by one of two methods: (1) Membership in a special "victim" class; or (2) having something bad actually happen to you. Method 1 is definitely is superior in every way since it eliminates the need for something bad to actually happen to you (as long as it once happened to someone like you--you are set); thus this method is preferable and automatically puts all sorts of celebrities and famous people on your side. They will not be concerned if you are a good person or a bad person; just as long as you meet the basic victimhood criteria.

You are probably tempted to ask what that basic criteria is for most famous people to support you? Here is a tip (keep it under your hat): most famous people--especially undeserving famous people (i.e., people who are famous not for any particular talent they have, but because they might have a good publicist, for example) have an intense need to feel that they are "champions of the oppressed." This relieves them of the pervasive feelings of guilt under which they must function. Hence, all you have to do is to convince them that you are "oppressed" by one of a number of usual "oppressors", and you are home free!

Here is a handy list of possible oppressors that can be used by almost anyone searching for victimhood status:

- caucasian, heterosexual males
- Republicans (either male or female)
- conservatives (either male or female)
- businessmen or women (commonly referred to as "little eichmanns")
- capitalists
- rich people
- Christians (particularly Republican or conservative)
- the U.S. Military (all services)
- Americans (as a general group)
- Israelis (Jews)

Note: This list is not exhaustive, but it is a good place to start if you are pursuig victimhood for fun and profit.

Chapter II: THE BADGE OF VICTIMHOOD

Victimhood is automatically conferred if you are a member of one or more of the following groups:

- An underrepresented race (whoever is in the minority--the majority are barred from victimhood)
- An underrepresented gender(males are prohibited from victimhood)
- An underrepresented sexual orientation (heterosexuals are not allowed to be victims)
- A nation without land (e.g., Palestinians; Note: The Kurds aren't considered victims because they aren't the right kind of victim--they admire the U.S. and aspire to democracy & freedom thus, disqualifying them)
- Any nation the U.S. has a disagreement with
- A religion stuck in the Middle Ages (e.g., Islam)
- A person in jail (your crime is immaterial, but the worse the crime, the better)

Other individuals or groups may petition for Victimhood if they meet the following criteria:

- The Liberal Media confers it on them
- You appear on talk shows and spill your guts about some distasteful event that happened to you
- You use drugs or alcohol but get into treatment after you get in trouble
- You find God after you get in trouble
- You are very sorry for your reprehensible behavior or actions and have a reputable person to blame for why you did it (President Bush is always a good choice, but any parental figure--even God-- will do)
- If you are a nation or religion, it is always safe to be a victim of the Jews
- If you are incompetent at your job and unable to get ahead it is generally due to someone else's behavior; or it might be due to Adult Attention Deficit Disorder-- either way works.
- If you haven't achieved your proper level of power in the world (even if you are a dictator, surprisingly) you could be a victim of American foreign policy
-If you have economic problems, it is likely you are a vicitm of Capitalism (remember, that socialism, communism, fascism, and other ideologies are completely off the hook since they proactively blame Capitalism for all the problems of the world)
-If you are addicted to ANYTHING, you are likely to be a victim!
-If your feelings are hurt by someone--either intentionally or unintentionally-- you are a victim (call our toll-free number above if you have any questions, but most Universities have special policies that cover you)
- If you can attract Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, Ramsey Clark, or Bianca Jagger to your cause, you are, by definition, a victim! Case closed!

Having something bad actually happen to you is the second method of achieving Victimhood. However, as mentioned in Chapter 1; it is a much less direct method than the methods listed above and is not recommended.

Why, you might ask? Simple! Waiting around for something bad to actually happen to you is an extremely inefficient way of becoming a victim. After all, you cannot control when or where natural disasters occur. Statistically, other disastrous events (e.g., lightening striking; plane crashes; etc.) do not occur frequently enough to be reliable. And it is important to note that many people who suffer victimhood in this natural way will eventually get on with their lives! And that is the LAST THING YOU ACTUALLY WANT TO DO! Remember the most politically correct type of Victimhood is the kind you can inflict on yourself! Be professional! Our motto at WorldWide Victimhood, Inc. is "Take Control of Your Victimhood!".

IMPORTANT NOTICE: If you are lucky enought to already be a member of an approved victim group AND something bad happens to you (e.g., a hurricane or other natural disaster) well, that is, as we say in the biz, the best of all possible worlds (assuming, of course, that you survive the experience). Then you are a victim twice-over, and entitled to what we will refer to as the Platinum Club victimhood membership rewards. (Discussed in a Chapter yet to be written).

Chapter III : HOW TO EFFORTLESSLY MAINTAIN YOUR VICTIM STATUS

Here are a few helpful strategies to maintain your prized Victimhood status in spite of all efforts to placate, apologize to; help, or support you.

- Resist Resist Resist taking any responsibility for your own behavior. It can always be made to seem like someone else is at fault
- Have a ready list of other people, nations, religions, groups etc. to blame for your situation and do not accept help from those on your list
- Constantly demand your rights
- Use the medium of Television to tell your story as often as possible; however, any member of the media (print, TV, radio) is usually supportive of your goals and will work with you to best frame your victimhood to elicit optimal sympathy.
- Did I mention that you must NEVER take any responsibility for your own behavior? If I did, it is because it cannot be mentioned too often.
- Play up the victim's position of enhanced moral authority. Weep about your plight whenever possible. Do nothing to make things better.
- Become a spokesperson or a media darling for any of the groups who make up International A.N.S.W.E.R.--or join the Occupy Movement (unfortunately now defunct)
- Make commercials for Moveon.org; or at least let them use your story to explain how oppressive one of the oppressor groups listed in Chapter 1 are.

When using any of the above strategy, make sure you ACT like a victim--crying, whining, using anger effectively--all these can enhance other's perception of your Victimhood

NEVER take any steps to improve your situation--that way is the OPPOSITE of true, enlightened Victimhood.

Frequently going to see a psychiatrist or mental health professional can improve your Victimhood credentials (and you can apply the other strategies to resisting therapy to change); Other medical professionals are also useful in this regard, and a side benefit is that YOU CAN SUE THEM LATER if you don't like what they say; thus insuring further victimization!

Suicidal gestures are VERY helpful and can garner much sympathy. It is noteworthy that even large groups can use this strategy by encouraging suicidal behavior (or even homicidal behavior--which is counterintuitive, but fortunately often true!) on the part of the most vulnerable of their members (e.g., children or teens are good choices)

As you can see, there are many paths to Victimhood. Keep your head up and really look around for opportunities. One group in particular deserves special mention for their unfailing and extraordinary efforts at maintaining and feeding their Victimhood for decades. I am speaking of course, about the Palestinians. Through their leadership, they continue to creatively resist worldwide attempts to ease them gently from their role of victim. Their efforts have inspired many others --especially people and nations in the Middle East. But the Palestinians are, without a doubt the Gold Medal Winner of our WorldWide Victimhood, Inc. Annual Awards.

We at WWV, Inc. encourage all of you potential victims out there to watch and learn from real professionals. They are out there--everywhere you are--and their example can be an inspiration to strive for failure and achieve nothing in Life but to make others pay for their sins against you.

************END EXCERPT******************

DR. SANITY DISCLAIMER: To all those real victims out there, who are struggling to overcome diseases; recover from disasters and events; and move beyond those traumas that have temporarily and painfully interrupted your lives--I heartily salute you and in no way aim to denigrate your efforts. Taking responsibility for your life will empower you and enable you to grow beyond whatever you have experienced. May you always rise above what Life has presented to you and exceed all expectations--even your own.

All in all, it's rather depressing that in most of the west today, victimhood has become the ideal; a state of being that is actively sought and, if necessary, invented for one's self.




Wednesday, June 20, 2012

THE RELENTLESS PURSUIT OF THE TRIVIAL

From Richard Fernandez at Belmont Club, we get this insight:
There is in that obsession with the trivial — pursued relentlessly in the midst of the collapse of demographic, economic and military strength — something of the moral of the age. A civilization completely consumed by political correctness, which required counseling for the merest shock, which believed it would preside over the End of History, is now bankrupt, unable to defend itself and without a single darned light bulb in the hardware store. What lesson was it? Perhaps it is this: never mind if you lose your pants as long as you can save your face. Or as someone else put it, those whom the gods wish to destroy, they first make mad.

This is, of course, not the kind of 'madness' that really debilitated psychiatric patients exhibit; it is the 'madness' that comes with persistent psychological denial of reality; the insanity that derives from frantic attempts to avoid dealing with a real, imminent threat to one's health, or safety, or life; and displacing one's attention to somthing unimportant, non-threatening, and trivial.

You can think of psychological displacement as a special form of denial. It allows the individual to feel as if they are in control by focusing on a less-threatening problem so as not to have to deal with the real threat.

What do you do when faced with the 'collapse of demographic, economic and military strength?' Ban lightbulbs because lightbulbs are the imminent threat you can deal with.

What do you do when faced with the threat of a nuclear Iran? Why, legalize illegal immigrants; or improve your golf skills; or, even work on your re-election campaign. In the end, you can always blame Bush or the Republicans or Congress.

The entire purpose of displacement is to gain control over the conflict you won't acknowledge. By focusing on something you have some control over, the psyche is much less threatened. You can even pretend, that if it weren't for X,Y, or Z, everything would be perfect hunky dory.

Anything is preferable to focus on instead of the real danger.

Displacement can be thought of as an slightly more mature type of projection. In projection, the individual remains oblivious to the fact that he owns and is responsible for the emotions that he imagines are in the person or group into which he is projecting. In other words, ownership of the idea and/or the emotional affect is banished from the self.

In displacement, the idea or emotion is deflected from one object to another, less threatening one, but the ownership of the negative emotion or idea (e.g. animosity, anger) is retained--and is often raised to a virtue. A common example is the person who is angry at a loved one, but settles for kicking the dog. The anger is evident in the action and is still owned by the person experiencing it, but the object of the anger has been displaced by the dog.

The relentless pursuit of the trivial is a way of avoiding the essential. It allows you to lie to yourself and maintain that oh so important self-esteem (i.e., "saving face") that is also relentlessly pursued in today's world..

If the world comes crashing down around you, well that happens in the future. And, in the long run we're all dead anyway.


Sunday, June 17, 2012

THEY'RE ONLY DOING IT FOR OUR OWN GOOD !


“Of all tyrannies, a tyranny exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive.”--C.S. Lewis


Photobucket
[Political cartoons by Jerry Holbert]

It must be such fun to be one of a growing class of politicians that I will refer to as "postmodern busybodies"!

Imagine, if you will, the heady sense of power over others that comes with the job. You even get to tell people what to eat!

This behavior is nothing more than a bit of annoyingly intrusive narcissism displayed by a variety of politically postmodern progressive individuals and groups, whose goal is not to persuade you that their ideas are correct or even better than yours; but to force you to accept their ideas by make them laws.

We used to contemptuously call such people busybodies (which was not a compliment), and were mostly able to ignore their nitpicking power plays to control or change our lives.

Sadly, we can't do that anymore.

These a$$holes are everywhere. They are in the Democrat and Republican Party (but mostly the former); they are in the chattering classes and media; they are the elites of Hollywood.

We listen to their advice on everything from what car to buy to what deodorant to wear.

Mathhew Yglesias over at the busybody blog called "Think Progress" (actually, don't think at all--they always know what's best for you) thinks that the "trouble" with America is that we don't give our children good enough school lunches.

We give them Pizza. Oh the horror! Clearly this is the reason America is in decline!

I mock them, but Yglesias and his progressive compatriots are true believers in the soft, compassionate tyranny of the nanny state.

Their touching confidence that the government will keep us all healthy and safe from the evils of the world (or, at least the evil of pizza for lunch) is amusing, albeit misplaced. We can laugh at Yglesias because he is merely an impotent jerk.

But his kind of busybody do-goodism is rather less amusing when it emanates from the people who are currently running our government at the local, state and national levels.

Most congresscritters, be they Democrat or Republican, have never met a government program they didn't like, as long as it helps them get elected or re-elected. “Promise the Suckers Anything!” (Suckers=Us). And, of course, human nature being what it is, every single one of us are enthusiastically willing to take something when it is promised to us for nothing.

But, their ready and contradictory promises aren’t without consequences. And, they cost somewhat more than nothing.

There are two problems here. The first is how we the people casually shrug off any personal responsibility and abdicate our self-reliance and freedoms. If we do it often enough; eventually we will develop an enlarged sense of entitlement to other people's money and effort. Soon we will be caught up in aggrieved victimhood, when the gravy train stops. If you doubt this, then wake up and take note of what is happening in Europe today (and watch carefully the results of the Greek election). In EU fantasyland, people demand that everything go on as usual and that they continue to receive what was "promised" to them by their own self-absorbed and anti-reality politicians.

NOTE: Pretending that the real world doesn't exist is rather infantile—and completely narcissistic.

The second problem is the (supposedly) grown-up narcissists we the people elect to Congress who do the promising, and then refuse to face either external reality (we are going broke and running out of other people’s money to pay for it all) or internal reality (they glory in the power they have over us AND, amazingly, they always profit mightily from it).

Another example of narcissism for fun and profit in the 21st century.

From regulating and taxing the gasoline that goes into your car and the emissions that come out; from state seatbelt laws; all the federal warning labels on cigarettes (the new requirements are absolutely horrifying literally and figuratively 54, all anyone seems to want to do anymore is to micromanage everyone else's behavior.

Local school districts ban dodge ball and tag; ban peanuts from school; Congress mandates what kind of light bulbs to use; what drugs are legal and what drugs are not; whether you can gamble or have church services in your own home.

The list goes to infinity and beyond.

There is no end to what these postmodern busybodies try to control about your life and your choices. And the farther up the government food chain you go--from the local level to the federal level--the worse it gets.

Ironically, these are the same people who are presumably "pro-choice" and champion "abortion rights" and a Woman's right to choose, arguing that, since it is her body, she gets to kill the fetus if she doesn't want it. But never mind all that when it comes to athletes who want to use performance enhancing drugs. Isn't it their body? So what if I want to "defile" my body by eating pizza with 16 oz sodas for breakfast, lunch and dinner?

Ahhh, they smile happily. You gave up that right when you told us you wanted the government to manage health care. When you shirked your responsibility to take the consequences of your behavior. Now WE have to control that behavior! Of course, we'll do a much better job of it than you would anyway.

Yes, these crusaders for peace and social justice and bans on cigarettes are everywhere, but they are scariest when we ourselves give them the power to make us into children and act out their parental fantasies for our own good.

Take Nanny Pelosi, whose every action is loudly proclaimed" for the children!"—or, so she tells us. Her latest gambit is to “do for childcare what we did for healthcare.”

Soon, no child care provider will be safe from her intrusive, busybody nanny-statism.
Or, take Barney Frank (please), whose sincere devotion to social justice when he was overseeing Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac directly led to the housing crisis. Now, of course, he claims it was all the Republicans’ fault because they didn’t stop him from his madness.

In a rational and yes, a "just" society, these busybodies would be laughed at. In a society that valued self reliance and personal responsibility, they would rightly be considered idiots.

[NOTE: I am currently extremely busy and don't have a lot of time to post, so I am recycling an earlier post on this topic, "Sugar Daddies and the Mommy State"] Hey! If the President can recycle his speeches....

Friday, June 15, 2012

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

SUPERMEGAHYPER DENIAL

It seems that all my posts recently have had the theme of psychological denial.

But clearly I am mistaken about this. It's not just simple denial by any means.

Like a bacteria that has metamorphed into a "superbug" which no antibiotic can kill, the supermegahyper denial that is rampaging around the world, infecting almost all countries appears to be unable to be stopped by any rational antidote.

The golden hour has passed and events are now out of our hands:
At the moment the United States seems to be talking from a position of impotence. As Lee Smith wrote in the Weekly Standard, “the Obama administration can’t do a damn thing.”[....]

Russia has been accused by Hillary Clinton of arming its allies with attack helicopters. “A shipment of attack helicopters is “on the way from Russia to Syria, which will escalate the conflict quite dramatically,” Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Tuesday. But it is unclear what the administration, having given its warning, will do for an encore.

All it can do, for the present, is lead from behind, a strategy which is looking and less and less effective.

Like a set of dominoes poised to fall, Egypt is on the brink; Syria, fueled by Russia and Iran could ignite a war with Israel (via Hezbollah) to distract the world's attention from its own atrocities; Iran still pursues the means by which to destroy Israel and the US; and Israel--well, Israel's hand is about to be forced by the impotence of the U.S. and other democracies of the west.

Meanwhile a second set of economic dominoes in the west is also set up to imminently fall over: Greece and Spain are on the cusp; Italy is right behind them; Germany is becoming frustrated and feeling abused (and we all know where that has ended twice in the last century); and the U.S. is impotent to act and risks its own implosion as the Obamaniac elites keep steering its course for the nearest cliff.

But then, maybe I'm too optimistic about all this.

Wretchard thinks that none of this is inevitable. But, I think not only is it evitable, but it has probably reached a point of no return simply because events are moving way too fast; and the indecisiveness and lack of moral and psychological clarity is so pervasive, that the infection of supermegahyper denial is about to prove lethal.

The administration has checkmated in such an epic manner as to beggar the imagination. Ordinary stupidity could hardly have effected such a comprehensive disaster. Mere imbecility would have been insufficient to the task. Only an arrogance that mistook ignorance and incompetence for “smart diplomacy” could have achieved such a train wreck.

And the most astonishing thing is how they are proud of it. Just how poorly the West has been served by its leaders is the shown by the smug satisfaction with which they’ve destroyed its wealth; corrupted its culture and embarked on a fantasy energy policy. What threat? What problem?

I hope I'm wrong. But who is there to lead?




Monday, June 11, 2012

FOR THOSE IN DENIAL, THE EUROPEAN CRISIS EXPLAINED



UPDATE: Wow! That was fast:
MADRID (AP) — Euphoria over a lifeline of up to €100 billion ($125 billion) to rescue Spain’s hurting banks morphed into a financial markets rout in a matter of hours Monday, as investors digested the still-undefined plan and became concerned the country may be unable to repay the new loans.

Nils Pratley at the Guardian is impressed. “Bailouts in the eurozone used to generate relief rallies that lasted at least a week. The Spanish version couldn’t even manage a full morning.”

Read the entire post.

Key point: "The bitter truth is that the European collapse is simply the consequence of Leftist fantasy politics. It is what happens when people realize that the ‘paradise’ they’ve been building is nothing but a deconstructed, demographically collapsing, hollowed-out and bankrupt shell of lies."

Sunday, June 10, 2012

KEEP IN MIND HE'LL HAVE MORE FLEXIBILITY AFTER THE ELECTION

In the frenzy of national security leaks designed to make President Obama appear to be a "tough guy".... here's Dr. Krauthammer on the subject:



...it is crucial to remember one simple thing:
he'll have much more flexibility after the election...


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[Political cartoons by Chuck Asay]

Friday, June 08, 2012

DENIAL, DENIAL, AND STILL MORE DENIAL!

Psychological denial is a defense mechanism that is used by everyone at different times in their life to cope with an unacceptable reality. It becomes pathological when it persists for more than a brief time. Denial can either allows the user to come to grips with the pain by temporarily modulating it; or it can usher the user into fantasyland.

Here are some recent examples of the fantasyland variety:

President Obama:"The Private Sector is Doing Fine"

Nancy Pelosi: Catholic Bishops/Cardinals "don't speak for the Catholic Church."

Jon Stewart mocks some of those in denial and in need of grief therapyater the Wisconsin Recall election results:


Sometimes, the only way that the denial of reality can be maintained, and the fantasy upheld, is through self-delusion....



[Political Cartoons by Glenn McCoy ]

So let's talk about self-delusion for a moment.

Engaging in "self-delusion" is the act of deceiving one's self about some aspect of reality; i.e., it is a form of psychological denial.

As I have noted in previous posts, we humans have quite a number of psychological strategies with which we are able to deceive ourselves about the external world.

Just a few examples to show what I mean by this:

- by using projection some very violent and angry people are able to convince themselves that they are working for peace and harmony.

- by using delusional projection some religious fanatics who behead innocent people are able to convince themselves that they are pure and holy, while" infidels" like Jews are monsters who "eat babies" and decend from "pigs and monkeys"

- by using displacement, some people are able to convince themselves that there is a devious plan to imminently replace our secular government with a Christian theocracy; while they are singularly unconcerned about religious fanatics actively waging war on the U.S. and the rest of the world trying to institute an Islamic theocracy.

- by using fantasy some people are able to convince themselves that these particular religious fanatics are reasonable and sensible people, amenable to negotiation and moderation.

- by using denial some people are able to convince themselves that Obama's economic policies are creating jobs and improving the economy.

- by using repression some people would like to eliminate all personal feelings about 9/11 and wipe it from the American collective consciousness; thus supporting the building of a mosque at Ground Zero while we are still in a protracted war with Islamic fundamentalists.

When dealing with well-defended people like this, one of the refrains commonly heard when you point out their defense to them, is that it is not they who are in denial about reality--it is you! It is not they who are projecting, it is you! It is not they who fail to see the danger, it is you!

For them it is simply a matter of opinion whether or not a person is out of touch with reality; and their opinion is just as good as yours, thank you very much.

But let's examine that interesting perspective (usually they convey it with a sneer, as in: "That's just your opinion.")

Probably the first prerequisite for accusing someone of engaging in self-delusion is that one must accept that there is an objective reality, external and independent to one's self; one's beliefs or one's emotions/feelings. Without such a fundamental epistomological foundation, it is completely meaningless to accuse anyone of self-delusion, althought postmodern intellectuals do it all the time.

For the record, self-delusion is an equal opportunity political defense. Both sides of the political spectrum are able to delude themselves fairly easily when the occasion demands it. But I am always impressed at the pervasive self-delusion that is the hallmark of modern leftist thought. No amount of reality is able to touch it.

As they wallow in their preferred form of social subjectivism, it is perfectly "reasonable" (if that is the word) from their perspective to impute delusion to others--even if every time they do so, they effectively demonstrate the invalidity of their own philosophy. That is why it is so amusing to observe their appropriation of the term "reality-based community" -- when they don't believe in any reality except for their own emotions!

The truth that threatens their fantasyland is that there is a world that exists outside their heads and outside their emotions; and that the entire purpose of reason --which they reject in favor of feelings --is about understanding that world.

Social subjectivism posits that our minds are disconnected from reality to begin with. How then is it possible for them to accuse anyone of "self-delusion"? One simply has a differing POV that is by their definition as real and true as anyone else's.

After all, that is the basis of the multiculturalism and the "politically correct" relativism that is persistantly foisted on the public.

hYou see, progressives feel that they can get away with their interpretations simply because they don't have to deal with external reality --if they feel it, it must be true! QED. The actual worsening of the economy under their watch despite driving the country into unbelievable amounts of debt is not something they care to think about. Instead, Nobel Prize winning economic morons like Paul Krugman explain the failures away by saying that the stimulous wasn't big enough! He won't be satisfied until the entire economy is destroyed; and then I'm sure he will blame the ultimate scapegoat for his failure to think: human nature.

I can just see his column now: "Human Nature unable to live up to Progressive Reality".

Or, note the behavior of "peaceful" and "compassionate" and "toleratant" Occupy Wall Street crowd. Or the one's calling for Walker's death on twitter. ( I am assuming the usual meanings of the words "peaceful" and "compassionate" and "tolerant"--though they would argue about the meaning of "is").

This is pretty much the same way that a child who doesn't yet understand about causation or responsibility or even truth, is behaving when they angrily retort to someone who accuses them of something they don't want to take responsibility for ("you broke that lamp!" "No, you broke it!" "No, you did!") Those who do not believe in an external reality--or personal responsibility or truth --may freely accuse those with whom they disagree of the same kind of distortion and blindness.

How fortunate that most adults have developed cognitive capabilities that enable them to determine causation--even if a child (or the adult currently flushing our country into the toilet, for that matter) doesn't understand the concept. A series of questions are asked and answered-- Who threw the ball that broke the lamp? Whose fingerprints are on the ball? What direction did it come from? Who was in the place where the ball was thrown; were there witnesses?-- and, in the example of the broken lamp, truth is fleshed out and responsibility assigned.

For all children--and sadly, many adults these days-- "reason" is nothing more than a creative process, and is disconnected from cognition and/or perception. As I have mentioned in previous discussions, children in particular, tend to use the more "primitive" psychological defenses, because their minds are not yet mature enough for optimal cognitive functioning.

As they grow and mature both physically and mentally, they do not need to lose that creative process that utilizes their emotions as perceptual tools -- they only need to learn to subordinate it to their cognitive faculties and to appreciate external reality.

When both sides are convinced that the other side is deluding themselves, it becomes extremely important that SOME ADULT SOMEWHERE examine the external reality and follow a process of reason to assess the truth.

Much as the politcal left (who as a group are heavily invested in the whole postmodernistic touchy feely thingy) would like to believe that they have exclusive rights to the truth, they have actually dealt themselves out of any contest for discovering truth by insisting that truth is relative. If it IS relative, then they they must agree that I am as correct in what I think as they are. Tsk Tsk. Too bad. So sad.

OTOH, if truth is NOT relative, but exists outside of whatever one side or the other feels is true, then by all means, let's get down to the evidence which will prove which side is correct. I'm game.

Do you begin to see what a house of cards they have built for themselves? If truth is relative, then by their own standards, it is not possible for anyone to be self-deluded-- since self-delusion (they call it "emotional truth" ) is their only reality.

What is most laughable is that their entire way of dealing with the world is based on a fundamental self-delusion - the denial of external reality.

When you live in a world where objective reality is unacknowledged, is it any wonder that from your perspective no one can every prove that what you feel is true, isn't really true? That is why the same distortions and creative fabrications resurface time after time in political discussions these days. The entire "the economy is all Bush's fault" for example. No matter how many times this is debunked, (or, I suspect, no matter how many years into Obamanomics we are) it will be recycled by the reality-based, or rather, the reality- deprived community.

To them, Obama may be fading as a leftist messianic superstar, but only because he is not going far enough in shoving their policies down America's throat. Certainly not because those polices don't work and never have worked! Let's see what happens when America thoroughly rejects their ideology in November.... I predict that the left will not be abashed; nor will they even consider re-examining their political --let alone their philosophical premises. No, they will whine loudly; scream hysterically; become agressive and probably violent, and insist that their policies were sabotoged by the likes of you and me (i.e., racist bigots who are homophobic, Islamophobic, and sexist to boot); that we are the ones who will not face reality, and so on and so forth ad infinitum.

Thursday, June 07, 2012

GLOBAL ECONOMIC COLLAPSE FOR DUMMIES

In case you missed it:

CBO predicts grim long term outcome on U.S. debt:
U.S. debt is on track to be nearly twice the size of the U.S. economy by 2037, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) warned Tuesday.

The new CBO report states that increased entitlement spending driven by the retirement of the baby boomers and insufficient revenue is making the long-term outlook for the national debt increasingly dire.


Under CBO’s most likely scenario, in which lawmakers extend current tax rates and fail to curb entitlement spending, debt held by the public would reach 109 percent of the economy by 2026, and it would be almost 200 percent of GDP by 2037.

This does not even take into account all the global craziness going on right now which has the power to facilitate decline....



Monday, June 04, 2012

BREITBART STRIKES AGAIN

From the website:
As a presidential candidate in 2008, Barack Obama disavowed any connection with former domestic terrorist Bill Ayers, the Weather Underground radical who was one of Obama's early backers and his colleague on the board of the Woods Fund in Chicago. We now have proof that Obama's association with Ayers continued even after Obama had been elected to represent Illinois in the U.S. Senate--in the form of a now-scrubbed blog post placing Obama at the home of Ayers and his wife, fellow radical Bernadine Dohrn, on July 4, 2005.

Well, of course the relationship continued despite Obama's lies to the contrary.

In March of this year, I wrote that maybe Obama's association with the two terrorists was about to be exposed:
Back in the election of 2008, I wrote a post titled, "The Relationship Obama Doesn't Want You To Know About." The relationship was one of many questionable--and somewhat characterologically revealing-- relationships that should have made anyone question whether Obama should even be considered to occupy the highest position in the land. The Obama machine attempted furiously to squelch any and all attempts to shed light on these relationships; and the sheep-like media went along because they were blinded by worship. Consequently, Obama's connection with Bill Ayers and the Weather Underground was never throroughly vetted. In fact, Ayers even enjoyed a round of rather positive media coverage which attempted to show he wasn't such a bad guy after all. I mean, all he did was try to blow up and kill a few people (see here). But Ayers and Obama have always been dead serious about their committment to "social justice."

You can read it all at the two links.

As I said then and repeat now:
We simply can't afford four more years of a President with the Bill Ayers mentality in the White House.

Even in death, I'm hoping that Andrew Breitbart will have the last laugh .


UPDATE: More Obama vetting by Stanley Kurtz:
On the evening of January 11, 1996, while Mitt Romney was in the final years of his run as the head of Bain Capital, Barack Obama formally joined the New Party, which was deeply hostile to the mainstream of the Democratic party and even to American capitalism. In 2008, candidate Obama deceived the American public about his potentially damaging tie to this third party. The issue remains as fresh as today’s headlines, as Romney argues that Obama is trying to move the United States toward European-style social democracy, which was precisely the New Party’s goal.

Please read it all.

Our current president has lied about and hidden his past from the American people for long enough. Mr. Tabula Rasa, was actually not so rasa and, in my opinion, it borders on criminal behavior that our media have colluded with him and his campaign to keep the secrets.

UNSEAL THE RECORDS!

Saturday, June 02, 2012

SUICIDE IS PAINLESS

I'm extremely busy over the next few days, so here is a post from over a year ago which remains very relevant, particularly with the Wisconsin recall election coming up on Tuesday. Amazing how nothing much has changed over the last year....

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In "The Put-off, Postpone, and Procrastinate Generation" Victor Davis Hanson says that the "therapeutic generation of Americans loves to talk and worry about problems and then assumes that either someone else will solve them or they will go away on their own...."

But the problem with our Federal debt is that it will not disappear over time; in fact, it can only get worse.
The United States needs some Harry Truman-like plain speaking, instead of each administration putting off a national reckoning onto the next. Don't drill for oil and grow food — and the price for both goes up. Spend what you don't have, and later you will have to pay even more back. The generation that ran up the debt and was largely responsible for the Social Security crisis has a responsibility to make things right on its watch.

Such blunt talk is considered political suicide for candidates; in fact, anything less for the rest of us is national suicide.


The dilemma described above is an insoluble one for a politician whose only goal is re-election. Doing what's right in that case runs second to doing what's necessary to keep his job.

And the reality is that the public often wants to have its cake and eat it too--which is why polls are often so contradictory (and meaningless). With a rare amount of consistency, it seems that Americans really really want the debt to be decreased; but they also want taxes to be cut AND they refuse to part with their entitlements and pet projects.

Inconsistent? Certainly. But very human.

The question is why should they behave any differently? For decades, politicians of both parties have promised them the Moon, never telling them the potential cost in the long run. They have been led to believe that they can get "something for nothing" if only they elect candidate X. And, if they can't ignore reality and get something for nothing, it is because of the evil, money-grubbing capitalists whose only goal is to suck them dry.

Who hasn't heard a politician these days, especially from the Democratic Party, insist that the only real fiscal problem is that all those millionaires and billionaires and the rest of those "rich" people need to pay more to society?

The solution is always to "Tax the Rich!" and all will be well again.

But as Kevin Williamson argues, the only problem with that is there just aren't enough rich people to go around:
There are lots of liberal definitions of “rich.” When Pres. Barack Obama talks about the rich, he’s talking about people living in households with income of more than $250,000 or more, the rarefied caviar-shoveling stratum occupied by the likes of second-tier public-broadcasting executives, Boston cops, nurses, and the city manager of Lubbock, Texas (assuming somebody in her household earns the last $25,000 to carry her over the line). Club 250K isn’t all that exclusive, and most of its members aren’t the yachts-and-expensive-mistresses types.

Nonetheless, there aren’t that many of them. In fact, in 2006, the Census Bureau found only 2.2 million households earning more than $250,000. And most of those are closer to the Lubbock city manager than to Carlos Slim, income-wise. To jump from the 50th to the 51st percentile isn’t that tough; jumping from the 96th to the 97th takes a lot of schmundo. It’s lonely at the top.

But say we wanted to balance the budget by jacking up taxes on Club 250K. That’s a problem: The 2012 deficit is forecast to hit $1.1 trillion under Obama’s budget. (Thanks, Mr. President!) Spread that deficit over all the households in Club 250K and you have to jack up their taxes by an average of $500,000. Which you simply can’t do, since a lot of them don’t have $500,000 in income to seize: Most of them are making $250,000 to $450,000 and paying about half in taxes already. You can squeeze that goose all day, but that’s not going to make it push out a golden egg.


But it's the "golden egg" mentality that is driving the liberal mantra. Since liberals don't really understand where wealth comes from, you can watch them getting angrier and angrier when they are presented with facts like the one above. The only economic policy they know is to squeeze that goose. They have never considered that at some point the goose will be completely empty of eggs--and if you keep squeezing, it will certainly expire.

Margaret Thatcher, who was talking about the economic problems in her country in 1976and attributing it to the Labour Party policies, said:
I think they've made the biggest financial mess that any government's made in this country for a very long time, and Socialist governments do traditionally make a financial mess. They always run out of other people's money.


Thatcher understood, too, that when Labour/Democrats/Liberals/Progressives/Marxists finally do run out of other people's money, they always fall back on the tried and true rationalization that it is simply MORE government spending; MORE taxing the rich; MORE central planning, and MORE control of people's everyday lives that's needed.

They NEVER imagine that the goose will stop laying the golden eggs for them to spen;, nor do they ever imagine that they will ever have to stop living life as a fairy tale and face reality.

Their primary concern is to maintain their power and control over others; and to that end, the political left have discovered that by ramping up the traditional Marxist "class warfare" rhetoric, they can deflect anger that might otherwise be directed towards their profligacy onto the usual convenient scapegoats.

We see the effectiveness of this tactic by merely perusing the posters carried by the Wisconsin union protesters; and also by listening to their leaders blame those who dare to be supportive of fiscal responsibility. The distortion and denial are incredible.

But, as they force, step by excruciating step, their states and finally the country off that fiscal cliff, they won't fully appreciate the suicidal path they are on until that final moment when their fall is broken by hitting the hard, unyielding surface of reality.

Plain speaking may indeed be political suicide; it's much easier to promise everyone what they want instead of showing real leadership and going against the polls; against the protests; and doing what is consistent with reality.