Archive for January, 2021


Sunday, January 10th, 2021

So, I’ve been spending a bit of time reviewing the echo chamber that is – 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!


Sunday, 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

Sunday, 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

Sunday, January 10th, 2021 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 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..

Friday, 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)

“When the looting starts, the shooting starts”…

Friday, January 8th, 2021

… unless you happen to be white republicans. In which case, by all means, start a riot.

I can’t say I’m really surprised.. I’ve long known Republicans were the party of violence, because they’re the ones always starting wars to rob nations of their oil. And Trump of course has always turned this up to 11, with having web pages talking about “joining Trump’s army”, repeated lies to his followers, extreme rhetoric that makes it clear that he’s only president of Republicans and he thinks Democrats should die at the first opportunity – even *retweeting a video that says the only good democrat is a dead democrat*.

They like to think they’re the party of law and order, but they’re not. They’re the party of “the police are above the law and should murder anyone they want” – which is *not* law and order. They’re the party one thinks of when hearing of whackos taking over a federal property and not getting charged with any crimes. Yes, the police let the right get away with a lot more than the left, but that doesn’t mean the right are more law abiding. I could gesture to the list of Trump-circle folk now with felony records – or I could of course gesture to things like the Klan and the Proud Boys. (They are also the party of “Corporations are above the law”, “The rich are above the law”, and “The president is above the law”. And of course, the party of electoral disenfranchisement.)

Unfortunately one thing conservatives are not good at is skeptical thinking. Over and over they’ve been fed obvious falsehoods and yet they still keep repeating the lines that were programmed into them by the talking heads on the TV even as it becomes more and more obvious those lines were lies. And they’re never going to figure it out, apparently – if they can’t realize by now that Trump clearly lost this election, and clearly tried to cheat his way to victory, then they’re probably not going to figure that out later. If things like Trump claiming COVID would go away doesn’t convince them their leader was a moron – not to mention, I remind you, we are talking about the person who went bankrupt *running a casino* – then I don’t know what will.

I have this theory that the bizarre facial expressions Trump makes while he talks short-circuits the brains of some of the people watching. Although, I also think in general we’re not that great at being skeptical when exposed to talking heads, and we’ve seen over and over that while liberal news is willing to use quite a lot of zeal in putting spin on things, conservative news is willing to flat-out lie, over and over.

I am hoping that seeing a attempted armed coup will cause some of the right to start to realize with great shame that yes, they were aiding a wannabe-Hitler. Not that Trump was ever anywhere near as smart or capable as Hitler, but he did want to be king for life and if he could have gotten away with genocidal acts he would have. Actually, in some ways Trump was worse than Hitler. Hitler at least wanted what was best for Germany, before he became a drug addict. Trump only wanted what was best for Trump, ever.

And while we’re talking – conservative morons, the immigrants were never a problem. You have been lied to, over and over. They were a convenient group to demonize.

Thoughts on the existence of God (or many Gods)

Friday, January 8th, 2021

So, from time to time I like to ponder this one – and remember, Christians, there was a period where I could have been put to death simply for writing this essay, for the crime of blasphemy, which I think argues more clearly than anything I could down here that your religion has a definite evil bent, at least as implemented on Earth.. but I digress..

Is there a God?

The existence of the universe doesn’t provide any argument either way. Lots of religious folks will say “The universe must have a creator” but when you ask “Who created God”, they look at you blankly. If God could have always been here, so could the universe. The rigid mathematical nature of the universe tells us very little as well – it’s clearly something that could have bootstrapped itself, as is human life. We’re not intended, apparently, to determine from our environment whether there’s a God (or many) or not.

Well and good. My strongest argument for there being a God (or hopefully many, since one would probably have been driven insane by being the only one of their kind) is that it doesn’t really make sense to me that humans would be the biggest and smartest things around. My second strongest argument is that WWIII hasn’t happened yet.

Arguments against God, or at least any God with any kind of morals you’d want to hang around, include everything from nuclear weapons to the proliferation of religions claiming to be the only one and claiming all adherents to other religions are ‘less than’ to the incredible cruelty of nature itself – and you can make interesting side arguments such as we’re in a video game, a experience to try when we get tired of perfection, a situation intended to encourage us to learn, etc. I can’t clearly rule out the existence of God based on anything I’ve seen thus far. I have seen things that argue in my opinion either for God or for many-worlds hypothesis.

My opinion is there are probably many things bigger than we are, angels, Gods, you-name-it. Whether they’re even aware of us is questionable – are we aware of individual cells in our body? How about dust mites? But, that opinion is subject to change when new information arrives.

My additional opinion is that pretty much all the religions of earth have bugs. I don’t buy that I want a complete lack of attachments, so I don’t think I’m cut out to be a bhuddist. A lot of the horrors of the Bible make me want to run screaming, and a lot of the horrors modern Christians commit – especially telling people “If you don’t believe the same thing as I do, you are going to Hell” – with the side note that that’s okay with them and they think you deserve it – have similar problems.

(As per always I must disclaim – I have met Christians who seem to understand what love is, and who don’t think my final destination is eternal torment because of the complex set of beliefs that I have. They’re just alas in the minority thus far.)

If you think Jesus’s name matters, you probably missed the point.

Thursday, January 7th, 2021

One thing that has always irked the heck out of me is Christians that end every prayer in “In Jesus’s Name, Amen”.

If one were to think of two things that are antithetical to each other a whole lot of the time, it would be love and ego. A lot of the time, Jesus’ message seemed to be about choosing love. I can’t help but feel like when his message pushed the idea of choosing ego, it might well be misrepresentation in translation or even later editing by people with ulterior motives.

We know people have ulterior motives in religion. Some of how we know is that the current Christian set pushes “christian values” that *aren’t even in the bible*’. The bible never explicitly says sex outside marriage is bad, although it does suggest sex inside marriage is good. It never talks about abortion at all and it explicitly says life begins at first breath. And, when I went through a number of bible quotes suggesting I’m going to hell for not believing in Jesus’ divinity in context, what I found was that it said the wicked go to hell.

However, let’s return to the previous topic here. If there’s one thing I believe strongly is that *Love is still love no matter what the beloved is named*. If you think you’re only going to heaven if you believe Jesus’ name is Jesus, I’ve got news for you, you missed the message by about a mile there. If you want to experience heaven, live in and with a mindset of love, and you won’t even have to die to get there. If you insist on thinking it matters what God’s name is, you’re probably going to get lost along the way. Just my opinion.

“Making the world safe for democracy”

Thursday, January 7th, 2021

One silver lining about yesterday’s riots – unless we are total hypocrites (and make no mistake, we are total hypocrites and what I am about to write will not come to pass), we can never again start or feed (by sending guns or troops) a war to “make the world safe for democracy”. We have demonstrated that we have no moral superiority, that we are not and never were the side of the angels, and that in fact our system of government will eventually hand nuclear codes to a toddler. shows that I am not alone in thinking this. (Of course, I’ve been sharply critical of the USA’s tendency to be murderous thugs, a oil company with a army, for quite some time now – and we also have a recorded history of overthrowing democracy in order to install totalitarian regimes, so “Making the world safe for democracy” was never really anything but a convenient excuse for being abusive in the ways we wanted to be.)

Just so you right-wingers know *what* you’re cheering on redux

Tuesday, January 5th, 2021

Another article that says things better than I could:

I know that lately it’s been hip and happening if you’re on the right to ignore reality. After all, we’ve seen the Laffer curve not work out time and time again, and yet you all keep voting like you’re Charlie Brown running to kick a football that by now you should be able to figure out that Lucy is going to yank away from you. You all remain deeply committed to the idea that the invisible hand of the market will fix everything – and let’s not even talk about the obvious economic sense of solar and wind, and your attempts to lie to the american people – some of which are apparently dumb enough to not understand that the grid has required some energy storage in order to remain stable for the last 50+ years.

But let’s talk about what voting for the right in a modern context means.

It means “People who have bad luck should starve and die.”

It means “If you happen to live in a watershed where fracking is occuring, you deserve the cancer that’s going to kill you. You also deserve the bankruptcy that our horrible, corrupt, broken healthcare system will push you into for treatments before you die.”

It means “I believe in freedom only when it’s a freedom I want to have”. In particular, you shouldn’t have the freedom to mess with your blood chemistry – unless it’s with alcohol – but you should have the freedom to carry a tool for killing other people. You shouldn’t have the freedom to do *anything* if you’re black.

It means “The police should kill any non-white people they want to, for any reason, and I will cheer them on. Murder of innocents by police and by our army is perfectly acceptable.”

It means “The rich deserve to be able to enslave the rest of us.”

It means “We should choose the dumbest possible way to generate and use energy if it makes the people who are currently rich richer.”

It means “Corporations should be more important than people.”

It means “You should be educated with a series of lies that matches how we’d like you to see the world so we can go on raping, murdering, and looting”

It means “If you are not a white male, you deserve to be a third-class citizen”

It means “Capitalism is more important than people. If capitalism isn’t compatible with mass automation, continue with mass automation and just let the excess workers starve to death. They are worth nothing anyway.”

It means “Life is cheap.”. In fact, we underline that fact with the USA’s COVID death record.

It means “Justice is for sale to the highest bidder.”

And, lately, it means “The majority’s votes only count if the majority voted Republican.”, along with the corollaries of “If you can’t win, cheat” and “lying about voter fraud in order to cheat your way to a victory is totally valid.. if you’re a republican.”

It means “Every child left behind”. It means standardized tests and money/funding are more important than teaching. After all, gotta make those profits at the standardized testing companies. It also means the rich should have a good education and the poor should have a bad one so we can make sure they remain poor. And of course, it means we should lie to our children – we should pretend there is any reason at all to think the Bible is anything other than a bunch of stories written by a bunch of people 2000 years ago, for example.

I’m not even going to touch the subject of religion, since there’s a whole category on this blog specifically for that.

I could go on for a while..