Sunday, November 19, 2017

I Love This Country

We went to the wedding of two really good friends yesterday. She's Mexican, he's Northern European. My wife and I got to do the ropa de boda ceremony at Mass. It was lovely.

At the reception, I saw a Scottish guy in full kilt walking to get a beer while the dance floor was full with a couple of gay dudes and bunch of Hispanic and white women doing Texas line dancing to a country music song sung in Spanish.


Darn straight, hombre.

Saturday, November 18, 2017

This Is How The Nazis Got Elected

I hadn't meant to start a series on how the progressives are Nazis without ambition, but once I got that mental model in my head, I see evidence of it everywhere and it's clarifying historical things for me.

To recap my analogy, if you change whites and "whiteness" into Jews and Judaism and you change people of color, women and LGBT into Germans, the analogy pops out.  Further, the economic policies of Obama/Hillary/Bernie and Mussolini/Hitler/Peron are nearly identical. For example, the Nazis called for universal health care and free education.

Where it falls apart is that the progressives lack the ambitions of the Nazis or the Italian fascists. They are quite content to simply beat down the opposition at home and leave other countries alone. Unlike the Nazis, they don't want to exterminate, they want to re-educate. Essentially, they want to obliterate the culture of "whiteness" and "patriarchy," whatever those are at the moment.

Here are three data points from the last couple of days, couched in terms of my analogy. Three out of about twenty that I saw.

1. A New York Times editorial asked, "Can my German children be friends with Jews?" The author answered the question in the negative.

2. A German woman was fired from a prestigious position for suggesting that Jews might differ between themselves in experience and outlook. She asserted that not all Jews are alike and you don't always have to hire Germans to achieve diversity.

3. The Commandant of the Luftwaffe Academy received an award for a now-famous speech in which he excoriated the Jews at the Academy for an incident where German cadets suffered racial insults. It turned out that one of the Germans staged the attack and the Jews were innocent of all charges. The Luftwaffe Commandant did not recant his speech and asserted, in essence, that the Jews still needed to hear it.

How The Nazis Gained Power. The German culture at the time was primed to accept the notion that the Jews were evil and caused all kinds of problems. It didn't matter that it was all nonsense, it only mattered that many people believed it to be true and anyone dissenting lost their jobs, were beaten up or imprisoned. News outlets didn't confront Nazi politicians with their atrocities and demand the Nazis account for them.

When the white supremacists, all couple hundred of them, marched in Charlottesville to protest the removal of a statue, any conservative not deemed sufficiently critical of them was branded a sympathizer and hounded incessantly. It went on for weeks and is still being used as an example of pervasive racism on the right.

As far as I can tell, no progressive politician has been confronted with these and asked to distance themselves from them. I don't see where anyone is even considering it. The whole notion of, say, the CBS Evening News, asking Elizabeth Warren if the Air Force dude was wrong to yell at the students is practically inconceivable.

These things go on every day. These aren't tiny bands of deranged extremists like we saw in Charlottesville, this is the New York Times, Apple and the Air Force Academy. These are large, mainstream organizations going full-progressive-Nazi with no repercussions from the media or the popular culture. That's because we've internalized the lessons of the progressives and these events are perfectly natural to us. And that's how Nazis win fair and free elections.

Poor Goebbels would never get hired these days. He'd be utterly redundant. Maybe he could make a living writing for academic journals.

Friday, November 17, 2017

I Love The Tax Reform Bill

... for one, simple reason.
(The bill would) cut the corporate rate ... in a year: Like the House bill, the Senate bill would cut the corporate tax rate to 20% from 35% today.
That's it. Everything else is window dressing to me. For me, it's all about jobs and lowering the corporate tax rate would encourage businesses who have left to come back home. No, the pennies-per-hour-labor-cost Levis factories in Cambodia won't come back, but others would. I saw one estimate that said cutting the corporate tax rate would increase household income by $3500 from the jobs that would pour back to America. I can believe that.

Clarity. Another benefit to cutting the corporate tax rate dramatically is that it would test the conservative principle that private businesses drive the economy, not the state. Is what we believe true? Well, with this bill, we'd see. It certainly makes sense to me. The government raises funds from profits, both corporate and personal. If you punish businesses with regulations and taxes, they will take their profits elsewhere.

Another component to the clarity would be to reveal whether or not the Republican Party believes what it's been peddling all these years. Lower taxes, lower regulations, those are the keys to prosperity. We discovered with the ObamaCare repeal that John McCain has no convictions and is only there for the cameras and adulation. How about the rest of them? Can we get 50 votes for this great experiment in conservative foundational principles?

Expert Opinion. Our tax accountant son loves the bill. He said he can't believe how good it is in simplifying things and getting rid of ridiculous rules. He's apolitical as far as I know, so his take on it is simply professional. He's a serious dude and I respect what he has to say.

Trump is a Conservative. I don't know where the Trump-haters on the right go after this. Mountains of originalist judges appointed, slashing regulations at every turn, a sincere attempt to end the catastrophe of ObamaCare and now this. What the heck do you want? So the guy has a mouth on him like a New York City barroom blowhard. Enough already, we get it. He is turning out to be the most conservative president since Reagan and still they carp and whine.

It will probably come down to McCain. Does he believe in his stated principles more than he loves the adulation of the press? We'll see.

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Diving In Belize

I figured it might be nice to have an oasis on the web today, a place where you could see something beautiful and no one was yelling. This place is on my Bucket List. Enjoy.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

The Red Pill And The Genius Of The Catholic Church

Yesterday, on the excellent Andrew Klavan Show, he interviewed Cassie Jaye, the filmmaker behind the movie The Red Pill.

I watched it last night and thought it was superb. Cassie was a documentarian of impeccable feminist and progressive credentials when she decided to investigate the men's rights movement. She went into the project thinking she'd find hate and misogyny and came out the other end having thrown away feminism. It's well-made movie that documents her journey as much as it does the subject.

The one thing that jumped out to me as a Catholic and an instructor in the Church's marriage preparation classes was the genius of the Church. We're not mentioned in any way in the movie and the film is not religious in the slightest. Instead, it's a description of the antagonistic relationship between men and women, feminists and men in particular. The problem arises when you see us as separate creatures rather than cooperative ones that complete each other.

In marriage, we say that the two become one. It is no longer me, but we. Feminists vs. men is nothing if not an atomization of that bond. Further, Saint John Paul II's Theology of the Body brilliantly lays out how men and women are complementary. It's not about individual rights, it's about how we serve each other in different ways, based on our sex. Yes, there are areas of overlap, but the key is how we meld into one to make a greater whole, not how we compete for the same things.

If that was what we were striving for as a culture instead of who gets which jobs and who gets paid what, we'd be a lot better off because we'd be working with nature instead of against it. Oh well.

Having said all that, the movie is still well-worth watching. It's available on Amazon and is free to Prime members.

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Seriously, Stop Teasing The Lion

From my last post on this topic.
One thing we know about Trump is that he gets revenge when he feels wronged. Apparently, today's indictments from Mueller were against Paul Manafort for tax fraud and other odds and ends, but that's not the point. If Trump decides he's had enough and it's time to go nuclear on the Democrats, there is practically no limit to what a team of prosecutors can find to indict Hillary and her goons. It would be a fire that swept through the Clinton allies, the DNC and all their cronies to rival the one that scorched central California recently.
From today's WSJ.
Late Monday, the Justice Department told the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, Robert Goodlatte (R., Va.), that Mr. Sessions had directed “senior federal prosecutors” to evaluate other Russia-related issues related to former Democratic presidential candidate Mrs. Clinton, which Rep. Goodlatte and other lawmakers had asked about. The letter said the prosecutors would make recommendations “as to whether any matters not currently under investigation should be opened.”
Like the Puppy Blender says, we've got the worst political class ever. These people are so stupid that they probably put on their shoes and socks in that order.
I tried to warn you.
Addendum: Hillary was never pardoned for any of the multitude of crimes associated with her email server. There was a decision not to prosecute, but that can be reversed. It's not just her. Here's what I wrote over a year ago about the emails.
So Hillary received a bunch of Secret and Top Secret emails on her Unclassified server. There's an air gap between the networks which means that someone had to deliberately, physically move data from one network to another to get it to Hillary's server. Intentionally moving data from a higher classification level to a lower one is a crime. Period.
A lot of people are in serious jeopardy here.

Monday, November 13, 2017

Roy Moore, George Takei, Powerful Men, Vulnerable Women

Men dominating women is what the recent swarm of sex scandals are all about. In the case of Kevin Spacey and Geore Takei, it's little boys. Whatever.

In the old days, we acknowledged this mismatch. For instance, we had separate dorms at college and a culture that supported marriage before sex. It was understood how men and women interacted and who had the advantage in which situation.

Once we threw that away, when we decided men and women were equal instead of complementary, vulnerable, insecure women became easy prey. They weren't supposed to be vulnerable and insecure, they were supposed to be strong and independent. If you weren't, you had to fake it because merely intimating you couldn't stand up to a man was an apostasy worthy of public ridicule.

In my experience, public ridicule is just about the worst thing in the world for most women.

So here we are, making political points out of a failure to acknowledge a simple equation. It's not that Roy Moore is a predatory, right-wing swine. He is. It's not that George Takei is a hypocritical, left-wing creep. He is. It's that we all decided to deny reality together and put women and little boys in this position, sneering at them as weaklings when they objected and said they couldn't be expected to stand up to the Weinsteins and Spaceys of the world.

It's perfectly normal for women to beat up men in close combat. Dealing with Harvey Weinstein should be no big deal.
When we are finally boxed in and we can't escape reality, we demand that millions of years of evolution be reversed. Men should stop being men - strong, decisive, aggressive and motivated by sex. Toxic masculinity is the problem and must be abolished! Good luck with that.

In the old days, we demanded that men channel their manhood into being gentlemen. Their strength, decisiveness, aggression and sexual instincts would be slightly redirected to the protection and veneration of women. That worked and could work again. This denial of biology is never going to work at all. You may stop some of the assaults, but you'll end up with emasculated wimps for men.

Whoops. We're already there. Protect and provide has changed into video games and porn.

Sunday, November 12, 2017

Arizona Ziggurat

Driving back from Flagstaff yesterday, going down State Route 89A towards Sedona, we were fortunate enough to get caught in heavy traffic. I say fortunate, because the frequent stops allowed us to take photos with our point-and-shoot Nikon Coolpix of some lovely scenery.

All of the geological structures around here have names, but I can't place this one exactly and haven't taken the time to retrace just where it was. It looks to me like a South American ziggurat, only this one was carved in the layers and layers of Arizona sedimentary rock by wind and water. I looked through some geological history videos describing the process and found a good one that I included below.

I took a little time with this photo, cropping and retouching it to bring out the features. I left it really large, so I think it's worth a click. Enjoy!

Saturday, November 11, 2017

Navajo Art And Whiteness

We're on vacation in Sedona this weekend, mostly to view the magnificent Arizona scenery and shop the artists' colonies here. Yesterday, we stopped at an art fair and wandered the booths, chatting with people and dropping some coin for lovely pieces of jewelry, pottery and clothing.

First off, everyone was friendly. We all had a good time discussing the creations, where we were from, other places we visited and so forth. One booth was run by a guy from Chicago who had gone to the same high school as my wife, just 5 years ahead of her. The only tension was whether or not we were going to spring for a gorgeous, Navajo/Zuni necklace, this one sold by the Navajo artist. It was $650 and in the end, my wife decided against it. The two of them had a great conversation as my wife makes jewelry as well.

Yesterday morning, while drinking my coffee and surfing the web while my wife slept, I came across definitions of whiteness. There's a story behind the search, perhaps something for a future post. Here's a decent source and below is a descriptive tidbit.
(Whiteness is) a dominant cultural space with enormous political significance, with the purpose to keep others on the margin....white people are not required to explain to others how ‘white' culture works, because ‘white' culture is the dominant culture that sets the norms. Everybody else is then compared to that norm....In times of perceived threat, the normative group may well attempt to reassert its normativity by asserting elements of its cultural practice more explicitly and exclusively.
Translated: Whiteness is the aggregate culture created through competition. Whiteness is whatever is winning at the moment.

With that in mind, I looked through the art fair. The booths were pop-up tents made in England. Their legs were aluminum, probably from Caribbean bauxite mines. The jeans the people wore were probably made in Southeast Asia. The cars they drove were Japanese or built using Japanese methods as the American auto makers got schooled in the 1970s by the Japanese. The oil and gasoline that lubricated and fueled the cars likely came from Dixie - extracted in Texas and refined in Louisiana. We all spoke English, although some had distinct, Mexican accents.

That's what "whiteness" is. At least, that's what it is to me. As I don't watch movies or TV very much and my music consumption is almost all Christian Contemporary, I can't say what it is for everyone else, but to me, the culture is what I drive, where I shop, what I wear and what I cook. For the life of me, I can't figure out why I should be wound up about this.

Everyone was having a good time and the artists were making money so they could go back to their studios and do what turned them on - create more art. None of the progressive-Nazi screaming made any sense at all as we shopped at the art fair.

Sometimes, I think our universities are actually mental institutions.

Navajo/Zuni art, Cambodian blue jeans, British tents, Caribbean bauxite, Japanese cars and petroleum products from Dixie. Cultural appropriation at its worst. A sickening display of whiteness.

Friday, November 10, 2017

Gila Bend Enters The Space Age (Lodge)

We drove to Sedona for the weekend yesterday and, passing through Gila Bend, we saw this quirky motel.

The reviews on Google are excellent, so Best Western is doing a good job with the place. It's great to see a hotel chain with a sense of humor.

Thursday, November 09, 2017

Crazies Get To Swing First

The Sutherland Springs massacre has had me doing some pondering. I've never been able to put my finger on what was wrong with the background-check-prevents-mass murder logic before. I know a little about dealing with violent, mentally ill people and I started applying my experience to this event.

Crazy people have all day and all night to think up ways to hurt others. Their focus is on inflicting pain and suffering and some have genius or near-genius mental powers to devote to the task. They will use whatever is available. If they can't get guns, they will use poison, knives, cars, shovels or anything else that might do the trick.

Crazy people always get the first swing. We have laws against assault and the police frown upon you restraining another person with handcuffs or ropes. It's not going to end well if you lock another person in the basement and feed them once in a while. Crazy people are allowed to roam freely and you can't take preemptive action, no matter how dangerous you think they are. If the crazy person has a history of attacks where their weapons show escalation of danger, you can't do anything to them until it gets lethal or practically lethal.

When an attack gets underway, you can't always call the cops. Sometimes you're busy defending yourself and trying not to be killed or maimed. Sometimes you're hampered by a desire to not kill the crazy person attacking you. When defending yourself, it helps to have some weapons at hand or training in martial arts. I was always lucky enough to be able to use the latter and prevent things from getting completely out of hand.

Calling the cops isn't always the best idea, either. By the time they show up, it can be either too late or the scene will lack any evidence of who started it. I have a couple of friends who ended up in jail because they were defending themselves and the cops believed the crazy person.

This is an excerpt from the US legal code. I don't know what it does, but it's the kind of thing people think is going to stop crazy geniuses intent on committing mayhem.
(a) Sections 452 through 459 and section 462 of this chapter shall also apply to the United States Court of Federal Claims, to each court created by Act of Congress in a territory which is invested with any jurisdiction of a district court of the United States, and to the judges thereof.

(b) The official duty station of each judge referred to in subsection (a) which is not otherwise established by law shall be that place where the court holds regular sessions at or near which the judge performs a substantial portion of his judicial work, which is nearest the place where he maintains his actual abode in which he customarily lives.

Crazy people want to hurt, have time on their hands, are imaginative and get to attack first. Laws and cops are all well and good, but when things start going sideways, I want a weapon close at hand.

Personally, I want an AR-15 with the Harambayonet. ;-)

Wednesday, November 08, 2017

You Can't Swim And Film At The Same Time

... and do your filming any justice.

I picked up a couple of lessons learned from our recent scuba trip to the kelp beds off Point Loma. The first deals with safety.

We did two dives. Our first dive was our first one after over a year hiatus, so we were all rough. One of my sons said it took him 15 minutes to calm down, not from fear, but from unfamiliarity with the process. I took about 10 minutes. We kept in sight of each other and fell back into the rhythm of checking each other's status regularly pretty quickly until the very end.

When we decided to surface and go back to the boat, we didn't wait for each other. One went straight up and I followed. Looking back, I couldn't see the other as the water was a bit murky. The first made for the boat and I got caught in the middle, trying to make sure all three of us were safe. In the end, I decided I was too low on air to keep searching, so I went back to the boat as well. It ended well, thank God, but we all agreed to pick a leader before the next dive and keep in sight at all times.

On the second dive, I brought my camera, but we picked one of my sons as the leader. He had gone through his air the fastest on the first dive, so we figured it made sense to let him lead as he would probably be the first to need to return to the boat. That was fine for swimming around, but lousy for filming. When I found really cool scenes to shoot, I could only spend a few seconds on them before I had to swim to catch up to the others.

If someone is going to film, they need to lead. The others should resign themselves to hovering around the cameraman while he takes the time to get the shots he wants. That's not such a bad gig as there wasn't much difference in what you saw from place to place so swimming around wasn't that big of a deal.

Below is my favorite scene from the trip - a rocky outcropping with lots of fish. It also shows what it was like filming while trying to keep up with the squad. Enjoy!

Tuesday, November 07, 2017

Twitter Matters

... because, for the well-off, their bellies are full and they're safe.

We've got 3% growth, 4.1% unemployment and the stock market is going crazy. ISIS is getting blasted off the map and there aren't any serious existential threats out there. I think that's why the elites worry about trivia like who said what to whom on Twitter and whether or not Shakespeare is inflicting whiteness on wealthy, privileged college students.

Our political leaders, media talking heads, pundits and entertainers are behaving like a pack of catty, teenage girls because there really isn't anything seriously wrong in their lives. Since our society has split into two bubbles, as far as they're concerned, the Twitter Wars are important.

If they spent some time hanging out in less savory neighborhoods, they might talk about more than just feeding koi.

Monday, November 06, 2017

Kelp Forest Cruise

We went diving on Saturday. This time we did a boat dive off of Point Loma. The water was a bit murky, but I found a little bit of nice footage amongst what I shop and it's embedded below. This particular kelp forest looked like a Dr. Seuss forest - long stalks with a ball of leaves at the top. The fish weren't particularly plentiful, but it was still nice to be in the water.

It had been a while for all of us so the first of the two dives was really a re-orientation exercise. I didn't bring the camera on the first one, but instead concentrated on getting use to diving again. The second dive was a lot more relaxed and fun. I left the video hi-res, so hopefully it will be worthwhile. If not, it's not too long so it will be over before you know it. Enjoy!

Sunday, November 05, 2017

I'm Almost Sold On FuboTV

... because the ads are so great. These are two of my favorites.

I've got a Cursillo buddy who is from Naples and has been trying to get me to follow Napoli in the Italian League for years. With FuboTV, I could watch their games and share that with him.


Saturday, November 04, 2017

Ritual Denunciations Of Hallucinations

... is what I'm seeing a lot these days.

I'm becoming more and more convinced that progressives are Nazis without ambition. When I read the news or Twitter rants from the left and I substitute "Jews" for "Whites" and "Germans" for "people of color," including all of the different variations of each, it looks just like something out of Der Sturmer.

The analogy breaks down in one important area. In the 1930s, there really were Jews in positions of power in Germany. In 2017, there aren't any white supremacists even in positions of moderate power in America. Outside of a couple hundred nuts who get more play than a really funny cat video, I can't think of any white supremacists anywhere. Can you?

Find me a white supremacist who is a publisher, bank CEO, corporate CFO, Hollywood studio executive, published academic, beloved sports figure, prominent politician or well-known artist. Find me someone who gets any serious air time at all where any journalist interviews them with respect and real interest in what they have to say. I can't think of one.

Meanwhile, we have the progressives screaming that whiteness is a threat to the planet and white supremacists are everywhere. On the right, every time the topic comes up, the conservative pundit or politician engages in ritual denunciations of white supremacists as their very first utterances. There is not an ounce of public support for them from anyone, anywhere.

What's going on? I would suggest that this is frantic, desperate, wishful thinking on the left. Without the boogieman of white supremacy, their entire cultural ideology collapses. They own almost every media organ in the country from the news sites to Hollywood to academia. With those trumpeting their message of the gigantic threat from white supremacists, they have achieved what the Nazis could only achieve through murder and imprisonment.
The Nazi Party’s overarching policy was described by the term Gleichschaltung, denoting the effort to bring all German culture, religious practice, politics, and even daily life into strict conformity with Nazi ideology. It was a policy of total control of thought, belief, and practice and entailed the systematic eradication of all anti-Nazi elements in the country.
But it's all nonsense, even more nonsense than what the Nazis decried. There's no one out there to round up and imprison. You can't have a Kristallnacht because there's no one to attack. How long can you maintain a national movement against wraiths?

Make no mistake, I am completely against wraiths and their nauseating ideology.

Update: The wraiths are taking it on the chin at Reed College.
An anti-racism student group at one of America's most liberal colleges entered the 12th day of an administrative building occupation Friday...

“We believe that the first lesson that freshmen should learn about Hum 110 is that it perpetuates white supremacy — by centering ‘whiteness’ as the only required class at Reed,” reads a RAR (Reedies Against Racism) declaration delivered to all new students, the Atlantic reported.

Friday, November 03, 2017

Another Data Point In Favor Of Marriage

From this very thorough article by Glenn Stanton.
Even among households with similar incomes, and comparable demographic and educational characteristics, the following statistics demonstrate that, over the past year, married households are at least half as likely to have difficulty meeting their basic monthly living expenses and bills. This was most pronounced for black families.

And that's among households with similar incomes. It's almost like commitment carries over across elements in your life. Crazy, man.

Thursday, November 02, 2017

Too Creepy To Continue

I've had a blog post, perhaps a theme for several, percolating in my mind for a while, so this morning I started doing some research. I found a translated issue of Der Sturmer and then was going to go from there to modern university professors who are race-obsessed and very vocal when I pulled up short. It was just too weird, too sickening to keep going. I'll leave it at this.

It doesn't take much effort to see strong parallels between Jules Streicher's paranoid, Nazi rag which claimed the International Jewish Conspiracy was oppressing Germans when it wasn't killing them outright and the university profs who claim that whites are oppressing people of color when they aren't killing them outright. I could see where I could lift whole paragraphs from Der Sturmer, change the races and pass it off as modern, SJW prose. Seeing how easy it was sent shivers down my spine.

I'm done with that. As a palate cleanser, here's a chihuahua with some flowers. Enjoy!

Wednesday, November 01, 2017

Casey Stengel, Robert Mueller And The NFL

"Can't anybody here play this game?" - Casey Stengel talking about his dreadful 1962 Mets team.

Mueller and the Democrats

All of the K-Street, lobbyist insiders knew that Manafort was a crook. They knew it because they were crooks right along with him. The Podestas, probably the most connected family in Washington not named Clinton were in bed with the guy, getting Russian money to bribe Hillary and Obama so the Russians could pick up Uranium One. Why didn't they squash the whole Trump-Russia frenzy? "Ixnay on the Ussiaray!" was all they needed to whisper in the right political and media ears, but they didn't, they joined the mob calling for more and more hearings which were practically guaranteed to lead right back to them.

Can't anybody here play this game?


Good Lord, is it so hard to keep out of things that don't relate to your business? The sport is on the decline so you decide to call the core of your customer base racists? All they had to do was apply their existing rules and put an end to the politics on the field, but no, they had to take a "principled" stand, one they didn't take for the murdered Dallas cops. Now their ratings are much lower.

Can't anybody here play this game?

I had one more example - madness from academia, but that's almost cliche now.

What strikes me about all of these cases isn't the partisanship, but the professional incompetence. They can't execute the simplest tasks of their jobs. Lobbyist insiders shouldn't be running around, begging for investigations into themselves. A sports league shouldn't get into politics. These are basic things, not Bill-Belichickian acts of brilliant subterfuge and subtlety.

Is simple competence too much to ask?