..

January 20th, 2021

Well, it’s over. Four years of a con man grifting as much as he possibly could, and watching some people unable to comprehend that everything he said was a lie and that he was destroying us.

Now i can go back to having my normal level of loathing for our government, which is still a very long way away from what you might expect to find in a utopia. This will leave me much energy to spend on other, more productive things. I can probably even return to facebook. I look forward to someday in the near future having no idea what the president is up to, and not needing to know.

I do note that not only did the Republicans bring us two of the worst presidents in a hundred years – dubya, who started a war over false pretenses and got a million plus people killed, and Trump, who drove a wedge into the already growing divide between left and right and hammered it repeatedly, lied, stole hundreds of millions of dollars, committed so many impeachable offenses (including ignoring the emoluments clause) that most of us have lost count, and was such a badly-behaved child that he couldn’t even accept losing reelection and lied repeatedly, causing a small insurrection that undoubtedly has done much damage to the thousands of fools who believed his lies and broke into the capital.

Both of them lost the popular vote, but were placed in office anyway. Perhaps we could learn from the mistakes of history and either do away with the electoral college, or make it true proportional representation. It’s already demonstrated that it does not perform it’s desired function of not allowing dictators and demagogues to ascend to the office of the presidency (largely because by the time such a person can get elected, the brainwashed faithful are everywhere)

A lot of this does underline the evil of people like Rush Limbaugh and stations like Fox News – who have been lying repeatedly because it makes money to lie – the more you rile the people up, the more the advertisers will pay you. Rush had better pray there is no such thing as karma.

Anyway, so, we have people living in two different realities. The one I inhabit seems to match observable reality, in which, for example, the COVID virus did *not* go away in the spring. The one in which people continue to support republican politicians requires being willing to ignore those lies. Heinlein had a story that I’ve referenced before, ‘pravda means truth’ in which he talked about how a important aspect of living in the USSR was a willingness to forget the previous “truths” told by the government whenever a new “truth” came along. This is definitely a requirement to live in the modern conservative party, and even more so if you want to for example be a Q or CCP conspiracy nut.

Will they ever figure it out, or will we have republican suicide bombers insisting that the election went for Trump (*common sense* will tell you why it didn’t – he *barely* made it in the first time in a perfect storm, and then he spent years pissing off just about everyone by being his awful self. But, if you believe every lie he told, which some people do, then you believe he’s the best president we’ve ever had and you’re puzzled as to why he was not reelecte)

The one good thing I will say for Trump is that he didn’t start any foreign wars. That still probably makes him a better president than Dubya. However, I think history is a lot more willing to forgive Dubya for being easily duped than Trump for being a asshole who couldn’t even handle losing and threw a trumper tantrum that involved a violent assault on the capital by his followers.

Hopefully it’s over. I don’t expect to love Biden – he’s a moderate in a era when what we badly need is a extremist extreme enough to do as much good for the nation (and heartbreaking to the republicans) as Trump was willing to do bad for the nation. Even Bernie is to the right of me, though. I would be working on redesigning the resource allocation system, I’d be disbanding almost the entire military and outlawing ever having a bigger military than the two other largest nations, I’d be working on universal health care, universal income, mass automation to ensure no one starves, 3D-printing houses for the homeless, and so on. But I could never be elected, because as we said, I’m to the left of Bernie. So Biden’s legalistic tendencies and beholdenness to the powers that be are likely to annoy the heck out of me. But at least he won’t be actively swinging a sledgehammer at everything that’s good about the country (Trump tried to destroy the *post office* in order to win) and there is some hope that Trump will start his ‘Patriot’s party’ and A: they’ll agitate for ranked choice voting, since it benefits them too, B: they’ll occupy the extreme right, letting the Republicans become moderates and the Democrats become left and C: hopefully for a while, they’ll help make sure neither they nor republicans get elected by splitting the vote.

As I said above, I’m looking forward to not *needing* to know what the idiot in the while house is doing. while Trump surrounded himself with criminals because he is, at heart, a con man, Biden is surrounding himself with smart and capable people. They may be way too in love with the awfulness that is the criminal justice system of America, they may be way too in love with the horrors that are capitalism, but at least they are not idiots nor grifters. It’s a step in the right direction.

I also appriciate that unlike Trump, who was always very clear about the fact that he didn’t care what the majority (Democrats) wanted, Biden does express a desire to work for all the people who are here. It is a long standing problem that my utopia and conservatives’ utopia would be two wildly different places.

So, here’s to moving forward, hopefully away from the wildly awful behavior of the right. I still hope we do the right thing and put Trump in jail – it is important that politicians see consequences for behavior like his, or we will see Trump after Trump, eventually from both the left and the right. Trump belongs in jail. Eventually hopefully we can make even the conservatives understand how many different horrible things he did. “Orange man bad”. I think history will decide that Trump cared only about Trump, and did much damage to the world.

“there will not be another foot of wall constructed in my administration.”

January 19th, 2021

I’d like Biden to go a *lot* further than that. I’d like to see plasma cutters tearing down what of the wall there was, Trump charged with environmental crimes for the destruction parts of his wall wrought, and – and I know that Biden who is something of a RINO will never go for this – open borders with only a check for a criminal record – a return to the Ellis Island days. Or else let’s be honest and replace Lady Liberty’s poem with one that says the truth – that we are a awful and stupid people – stupid enough that we don’t realize that each immigrant who comes here brings more wealth, awful enough that we care more about our stupid immigration laws that were deliberately created not to avoid having immigrants, but to disenfranchise them, to enable us to use them as semi-slaves – and awful enough that treating humans horribly is something we embrace.

We are clearly not a Christian nation because the bible says, over and over, to treat immigrants well. And we are obviously not very bright, as a nation, because we’re easily programmed to scapegoat immigrants even though studies have repeatedly shown that they are more law-abiding than natural citizens

Mr Biden, TEAR DOWN THAT WALL! You can also sell chunks of it as souvenirs, like they did in Berlin.

Thoughts about love

January 18th, 2021

So, I’ve been pondering various things about love. It’s always been intuitively obvious to me that the standard behavior claimed by the Christian God (“You’ll be tortured for all eternity unless you believe $WHATEVER) is the opposite of love, and as I went through the various experiences with various people over the past few decades of my life, it became apparent to me that if you love someone and they don’t want to talk to you, then the only real thing to do is not talk to them, at least within the framework of behaving lovingly towards them. I have done further thought about to what extent love accepts people as they are vs to what extent love wants them to grow, and then the other question is when you want someone to grow because you love them, to what extent are you able to accept that you may not be aware of what the real optimum for them is? I definitely think there’s a problem with parents wanting children to have similar moral and value frameworks even though their moral and value frameworks may be wrong (and there’s a *huge* problem with people not considering that their moral and value frameworks may be wrong even as they are cheering on systems which are more or less guaranteed to fail)

Love is probably the slipperiest thing to define I have ever really considered. The word is heavily overloaded (like God) – meaning it has many different meanings depending on context and both the speaker and the listener.

Interestingly, there was one point where I thought I was addicted to sex, but I discovered that sex without love has no value to me, therefore apparently I am addicted to love. I think someone had a song about that..

I’m not even going to try to actually write the definition of it, at least not yet. I note that in the Bible officially love keeps no record of past wrongs, which means that hell as a punishment for any wrong behavior is apparently biblicly impossible. I always find the frantic jumping of Christian apologists to “But God is a Just God!” both funny and predictable. I think I’ve talked elsewhere about how the history of religions involving dieties is in general a measure of how humans always try to put superhuman intelligences into boxes they can understand and invariably end up using too small of a box. Thusly, I expect way, way better behavior from God than most people, and I sometimes wonder if this is because I myself am more intelligent, at least in some senses, than most people, and thusly can imagine a bigger box.

However, having a big enough box to capture the idea of love remains beyond me, at least thus far. I can sometimes identify which the path of love is, but I’m just beginning to even grasp the shape of it, much less be able to compile what I know into english.

I’ve heard it broken down into eros, philios, and agape, but I find all of the above overlapping and also suspect it breaks down to many more colors of the rainbow than that.

The challenges of sexual relationships

January 18th, 2021

So, one of the things I struggle with is the challenges surrounding sexual relationships. I think I’ve talked before about how I think a big part of this is that the memetics surrounding sexual relationships on earth are really not too good – we’re wired to fall in love more than once but we’re encouraged by the powers that be to mate for life, assured by various religions that non-monogamy is a sin (God forgot he wired us to fall in love more than once – or this is part of his grand plan for torturing us for being imperfect – a even bigger and more successful part of that plan is to ensure that sometimes we fall in love with people who don’t love us..)

Now, I don’t want to come off like a incel at all, but one of the things that I find frustrating is that feeling sexual attraction for people is very likely to end in disaster. Not only are the odds fairly low that you will be attracted to the same people who are attracted to you, but also if you do have a friendship that includes sexual overtones when the sexual portion of it is over you probably will never get to talk to the person again. I still miss Phoebe enormously, 15 years later, and Vinnie – although I will acknowledge that I screwed that one up in just about every way there was to screw it up.

Which is perhaps part of the problem.. sexual friendships bring out much more intense emotions than other friendships and so as a result things get a lot more extreme in general. I do think it’s true that we say and do things in sexual friendships that we would never do in others. And of course you have possessiveness and jealousy, both of which are *encouraged* in our current world memetics and turned up to 11 whenever possible in our world’s fiction.

Of course, another problem with all of the above is that if you’re going to try to follow the dictates of religion and mate for life, you have to find the right person – on the first try – while you’re very young and inexperienced – with all of the challenges that apply above. And you might end up with someone who physically or emotionally abuses you, because our memetics have set up situations that leave people in states where they do that, and then you should continue to live with the person no matter what because divorce is immoral. Yes, I have periods of really loathing earth’s memetics.

I also of course wish we could work out the whole ‘sharing’ thing. You would think, given how good falling in love feels, that we would want to encourage people to do it repeatedly, that if we in fact did love the people we are connected with we would want them to be happy. Part of the problem here, discussed many times by many different people, is the fear of abandonment – and the fact that Earth makes being abandoned quite dangerous at times, with worries about things like eating and living indoors. But beyond that I think that a very big part of what ails us is the elders feeling the need to know *which* humans are the parents of which child, and our idea that each individual should be responsible for caring for all the children that share their genetics. (In fact it would be *much* smarter for the entire tribe to be responsible for children – and then we could also stop having teen pregnencies ruin lives. But this would take away the fun of those who delight in punishing and love to sneer at the lack of morality of the teens that react to things *they are deeply evolved to feel*)

I do think a big part of the problem is also all the religious nuts who can’t accept that there are all kinds of signs that we are evolved and almost none that we are designed, and therefore want to blame us for things that evolution has done instead of trying to work out a memetic system that aligns with our evolution. I am sure you have all seen me talk about this many times before and I am sure I will talk about it many times again.

Anyway, I really hate the whole ‘if you are attracted to someone they may also never talk to you again’ bit, and I will be the first to admit that I have (partially due to mental illness) impressively screwed up communications with one particular $_PERSON on the subject. But I also think there’s got to be some middle ground and better communication methodologies that could be taught such that we had a lot less #metoo incidents and at the same time did not have no good way to say what we’re thinking and feeling without breaking any friendship or communication we have with people.

In short, the human memetics surrounding sex are a mess. I think pretty much everyone knows it. No, I don’t know how to write the perfect memetics surrounding the topic either. I suppose we’ll all just continue to muddle through, often with broken hearts and/or holes in our lives.

The right’s lies continue..

January 18th, 2021

So, as one would expect, the right is busy lying about how it wasn’t them who smashed the capital, it was antifa, or a left false flag operation. Never mind the fact that *everyone* arrested thus far has been a genuine Trump supporter – never mind all the video of the event posted to right-wingers-only-allowed, free-speech-only-if-you-are-Conservative parler.

I suppose it fits in perfectly with the tendency of the right to lie. What’s interesting is increasingly, you can pretty much safely bet that anything the right accuses the left of doing, they themselves have done or are doing. You can almost start to build a play by play of their actions just by looking at their accusations. Which, of course, makes me assume that if there’s *any* truth to Q’s accusations at all – something I highly doubt – the people running the pedo ring are them on the right. Which is kind of what you’d expect – repress natural aspects of yourself (like sexuality) and they’re going to come out in other ways.

I do wonder if I should offer a URL that shows my journal without my political ranting.. I think that it does help me get out some of my anger at the awfulness and egregiousness of the right without (generally) actively getting into fights with anyone, but I also have to imagine anyone who’s interested in the majority of my life has got to be getting sick of the ‘repeatedly beating dead horse’ section.

Then again, I probably only have about 5 readers and 4 of them agree with me, so maybe it doesn’t really matter. I do sometimes wonder if I am able to build up my musical skills to where I gather some more attention what my fans will make of my blog.

Parler

January 10th, 2021

So, I’ve been spending a bit of time reviewing the echo chamber that is parler.com – partially because I will take no small amount of delight in watching it go dark in a hour and fifteen minutes – but part of what it really underlines for me is how deeply delusional the True Believers of Trump are, and how much damage he’s likely done to us all with his continuous stream of lies about having won the election.

I honestly hope that Jan 21, there’s still food, shelter, and water for everyone. Believe me, the Trumpanzees are deeply deluded. They can’t fathom why anyone would dislike Dear Leader – they conveniently have forgotten all the hundreds of thousands he got killed, his tax gifts to the rich, his attempts to destroy Obamacare, the nonexistent Trumpcare, his refusal to embrace science, his evident and never ending racism (“the china virus”), his willingness to walk away from treaties we negotiated in good faith, the trade war he started and lost, etc etc – as a friend of mine says “Orange Man Bad”.

Yes. Orange man *very*, *very* bad. Orange man’s lies and/or delusions possibly about to lead to a civil war, which *no one wins*. Orange man’s encouragements have revved echo chambers in Orange Man Delusional Land (mostly from the same people hwo believe in God the Sky Fairy Who Will Torture You For All Eternity If You Don’t Believe Jesus Is Lord because he loves you so much) into levels of energy that, when you combine them with the fact that America is the most armed nation in the world, could end in major carnage.

Trump has deliberately done the opposite of unifying whenever he could. He’s repeatedly sent out emails to the Party Faithful talking about how democrats and socialists are subhuman. He’s also pumped xenophobia to the limits. I just hope that A: we make it through this in one piece and B:*maybe* people will think a little more before voting for pure evil because the alternative was sharing, and sharing is horrible!

Trump

January 10th, 2021

So, I think I’ve mentioned my theory that if Trump is associated with any member of the christian pantheon it would be Satan. This is pretty obvious – the extreme egoism, the constant lying, the willing to take his point of view to the most destructive and extreme ends if it will get him a win, all very reminiscent of the tales we have been told about the devil.

Another good argument for that is how much he’s brought us all down. Beyond taking America out of treaties signed in good faith, making us the laughingstock of the world, and repeatedly insulting our allies, he’s also turned brother against brother, neighbor against neighbor. He’s encouraged white supremacists and Christian supremacists, and encouraged hate and violence and discourse of the worst kinds. Remember any of these quotes?

*) “Very fine people on both sides”
(I should mention in all fairness that there is a context to this quote – he did explicitly say it did not apply to white supremacists. Just the people who love them.)
*) “Go ahead, punch him, I’ll pay your legal bills.”
*) “But you second amendment people could act, I don’t know” (meaning, Shoot hillary)

And of course, those are just the ones that immediately come to mind. Part of why I think republicans should feel deep shame is that, to “own the libs”, they elected someone that basically destroyed the country. He was always obviously a malignant narcissist, someone you shouldn’t trust with your car, much less the country. Then over and over, they fueled the fire, talking delightedly about “liberal tears” and “snowflakes”. Well, who’s the snowflake now? They can’t cope with losing a fair and free election and so they have to cheat, and if that doesn’t work to get out the guns.

I wish I could wash the memory of all the awful I’ve read from the right, starting with swastikas painted in gas station restrooms starting the day after he was elected, out of my mind.

The one bit of good news is presuming the number of violent insurrectionists that show up on the 20th in DC are inadequate to take over the government and lead us all directly into the living hell that would be a unchecked second term of Trump presidency (and a third, and fourth.. he’d be dictator for life and the USA would devolve into a unbelievable nightmare), most of the very worst Trumpers will all be in prison for attempted sedition and treason.

Trump continues the lie

January 10th, 2021

So, I just watched a video obviously done by quite a skilled propaganda house that continues the lie that Trump won the election, and pushes every God and Country button possible while also dog-whistling incredibly hard for armed insurrection on the 20th.

Just as I feel comfortable (and keeping in mind I’ve dug directly through voter data from several states) saying voter fraud is not statistically significant – it happens, but it’s hundreds of cases out of millions, inadequate to change the election results) – I also feel comfortable saying the majority of people are against Trump and I think most people recognize the awfulness he stands for.

So, what we’re seeing here is the conservative minority – in, I suppose, the typical conservative mindset of “white males should rule the world” and “we are Gods Chosen People and should be allowed to force anyone we want to do anything we want” – trying to enforce their will over the either independent, sane, or liberal majority.

I grant Trump’s tactic is very effective – because apparently despite the many lies that have been neon-sign obvious – like “COVID will go away” – there are people who still believe everything he says – so when he says “They cheated and stole the election from me”, a bunch of not very bright people believe him. Unfortunately, some of those not very bright people have guns or know how to make bombs.

Will the USA survive this attack? I don’t know. I still think the appropriate reaction for republicans is deep shame. I have no doubt that if they do succeed in creating a revolution in order to empower their violent minority over the majority that would prefer peace and prosperity, we will all suffer for it.

And I have no doubt that the majority of Trump supporters are well-brainwashed by traitors to the human race (fox and friends, rush limbaugh, breitbart – all these people have brought us all down and reduced the prosperity and happiness of the system as a whole so they could enrich themselves – it would be interesting to know what percentpage of them know they are lying and what percentage have just lost any grip on objective reality) and have shown the inability to tell fact from fiction. I think we may need to have some sort of criminal charges that can be brought against politicians who lie in the future.

I do think any of the people who are claiming to be Christians while they plan to get out the guns and shoot at their fellow citizens because they are angry that they lost a election or they are delusional enough to think *every one* of 60 different courts where lawsuits about the election were heard are controlled by the mythical “deep state” should understand that they are not anything that Jesus Christ would have endorsed. He might throw the money lenders out of the temple – but the side you’re cheering on *is* the money lenders, and I also doubt a lot he would say “shoot at your neighbor because you don’t like his political views”

I think Jesus was pretty much all about sharing. Collectivism, in other words. Trumpanzees, of course, think there’s nothing more scary than socialism.

I continue to be impressed with the wikipedia

January 10th, 2021

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Attempts_to_overturn_the_2020_United_States_presidential_election is a great summary of Trump’s attempt to cheat thus far. (Of course, looking at things like gerrymandering and voter suppression, we can, to quote the 80s drug ads, say “Republicans, he learned it by watching you.”)

One does sometimes wonder to what extent Trump’s money enables him to buy his way out of trouble, to what extent his ‘word salad’ mode, stubbornness, and apparent stupidity and immaturity enable im to get out of trouble, and to what extent his bizarre facial expressions and orange tint short-circuit some part of people’s brains. In any case, he clearly has lived his whole life never having to deal with the consequences most people would face for their actions..

.. until now. I think a lot of us rejoiced to see his twitter account shut down, although many have had to be reminded that twitter is a private entity that has no requirement to carry anyone, so it is not a first amendment issue that they are censoring his attempts to cause a armed revolution. I have run numerous online forums and I have more than once had to explain to people that me refusing to carry their warmongering/trolling/etc was not a violation of their freedom of the press. This gets complicated and very messy and the lines get less than totally black and white – I gesture you to the problem of the cakemakers and the gay wedding cake – but in Twitter’s cause it wasn’t. They had a published AUP that Trump has been violating for *years* – and IMO they should have shut him down the first time he threatened a world leader using Twitter. Hopefully in the future they will not give presidents quite so much rope with which to hang all of us.

I admit I am very apprehensive about what happens on the 20th. It’s easy for me to imagine enough MAGA-whackjobs with guns to simply kill their way across the mall, although on the other paw, my suspicion is many of these people are armchair warriors who will come undone when faced with the actual carnage and horror that is war.

My hope remains that we’ll move forward in some kind of positive direction from this, with the republican party hopefully burning to the ground and some sort of entity that actually represents conservative thinking in either the traditional sense of “let’s keep what we have” or “he who governs least governs best” instead of “Let’s be as evil as we can because these people are so gullible we can fool all the people on the right all the time!”. Part of the horror of Trump is that true right-wingers no longer really have a party. Of course from my point of view, the Dems chose someone so centerist they could well be a moderate republican. I voted for him myself, understanding that the alternative (Trump) was much, much, much worse – I like to think even some of his followers are starting to understand just how evil, unprincipled, and even unhinged the man was. But Biden was a looooong way from my dream candidate, and Kamala even more so. While I like that she represents minority and female leadership finally being slightly less underrepresented, my opinion of prosecutors as a class is extraordinarily low. I do not think it is possible to be both a prosecutor and a good person in America. Back to Biden, though, he was who we could all agree on, but he was almost no one’s first choice. Still, I wish him the absolute best of luck and hopefully wisdom will guide his words and deeds. It sure didn’t guide his predecessor’s.

The real hope, beyond positive growth, is that there’s not a violent uprising on the 20th (many people on horror-sites like thedonald.win are calling for one) and that if there is, it is quickly quelled. I like to think that the number of people willing to talk on the internet about how they’d kill every cop and soldier and democrat they could get their crosshairs is much much lower than the number of people that would do such a thing. I don’t envy the FBI the challenge of trying to determine a actual threat level and take appropriate response. I do think this is the first time in my life I have been grateful for the efforts of the feds.

One thing I am reminded of, not for the first time, is why even though I feel we need to retune the police, I continue to believe that police are a necessary part of human society. Without police, I would never have the freedom to not own a gun, and it is a freedom I cherish.

Anyway, back to the wikipedia. The wikipedia is not run by the left or the right, and they try very hard to achieve neutral point of view. This is not a easy thing to do on controversial subjects, and one often has to wonder how well a government would run that was run by lawmakers editing laws on a wiki, using the wikipedia’s rules.

If you want to see the ensuing drama for any given subject – and there quite often is, everyone has strong feelings about *something* – go look at the talk pages. Often they are archived from time to time, so you may have to find the archive page and click back several pages to get to the real drama. I admit I find them fascinating – and sometimes even entertaining – reading.

However, on almost all thinks Trumpian, I find the Wikipedia’s summaries well compiled. Yet another example of how collectivism works.

Pondering this meritocracy thing..

January 8th, 2021

The one counterargument that I came up with the other day is that the UK government in the time when the sun never set on the british empire was definitely somewhat a meritocracy, with a attempt to educate the governors and military leaders to the extremes of their capability (sing “I am the very model of a modern major general” and think about what he’s saying)..

.. and they never saw the problems with colonialism, and it took them some time to see the problems with slavery. (Less time than it took US, to be sure, but still, a disturbing amount)