The Coup Afoot

What’s a little coup between political enemies? But when we use the term coup the Left and media get so bent out of shape. Well, they always do when you point out what they are doing.

Treat ‘Mental Health’ Talk Against Trump Like The Coup Attempt It Is

‘Many lawyer groups have actually volunteered, on their own, to file for a court paper to ensure that the security staff will cooperate with us. But we have declined, since this will really look like a coup…’

By Mollie Hemingway — January 8, 2018 | The Federalist

In the second season of the TV show “24,” President David Palmer (Dennis Haysbert) is removed from office for failing to launch a war against three Middle East countries purportedly behind a nuclear attack on U.S. soil.

Palmer has reason to doubt his intelligence agencies’ assurances of who was behind it, and it turns out the attack was orchestrated by a cabal of business and military leaders who want to launch a war for personal gain. The means by which Palmer is removed from office during the 4:00-5:00a hour on Day 2 is the 25th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, a portion of which reads:

Section 4. Whenever the Vice President and a majority of either the principal officers of the executive departments or of such other body as Congress may by law provide… to the Senate and the…House of Representatives their written declaration that the President is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office, the Vice President shall immediately assume the powers and duties of the office as Acting President.

Palmer’s chief of staff explains, “it seems there are people, cabinet members, who question whether you’re fit to continue as chief executive.” The conniving vice president says in the cabinet meeting putting the president on trial, “What I intend to show is a pattern of erratic behavior since this crisis started.” Using half-true innuendos and rumors as well as deliberately false information, he convinces enough of the cabinet to depose Palmer. In other words, Palmer is the victim of a bloodless coup. …/

Read more: http://thefederalist.com/2018/01/08/treat-mental-health-talk-against-trump-like-the-coup-attempt-it-is/

Good article, but a coup it is. They won’t stop for lack of success. They intend to keep at it. They got this far. So the convenient book by Michael Wolff fit perfectly into their narrative. Why is that? Because Wolff knows exactly what he and they are trying to do.

Wolff plans on having a key role. To even admit what the purpose and intent is validates exactly what it is. More like a Fake News Coup. A bloodless coup, but every bit as nasty otherwise. The book, conveniently timed as it is, confirms all Leftists’ narratives up to this point. Since Obama, belief has been everything to the left. Truth is not a factor. Listen to him, Wolff goes out of his way to confirm every slanderous claim and accusation they have made, like he is leading a parade. And garbage in equals garbage out.

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Deplorable Hillary waste: oooh that smell

Hi, Iggy Bliss here. It’s been a while but I’m back after composing my thoughts from the election. (winning can do that to you)

But after Hillary came out with her new book, I just couldn’t re-restrain myself. The queen of “what difference at this point does it make?” has not lost her edge. Now she says “it’s happening!”

Well, I’ve been around the barnyard here for a long time, with all the animals, but I never smelled a nasty pile like that before. Ol’ Iggy knows the difference between hog waste and horse manure. And I think she invented a whole new waste category.

Most of us deplorables, and even barnyard animals, are more tuned into reality than that has been IS. She’s flat out delusional

Here is what she said on Twitter:

So Hillary, you will be “fighting” with everything you have against the rule of law, Constitution, and the American people. Thank goodness you lost, you harlot

Then she does an interview with Anderson Cooper and, asked about going to the inauguration, Hillary said, “I am inflicted with the responsibility gene.”

Call me tared and feathered. She has the responsibility gene? The bitch busts out her new book like she’s breaking out a bottle of Dom Pérignon(’59). Sorry, Hillary, the lies weren’t that good the first time around. But she breaks it out the day after 911. That date is not a surprise or floating date every year.

Yet you picked that day. As they say, “if it happens” in politics “you can bet it was planned that way.” Vintage Dom Pérignon it isn’t. My cousin Carl makes better stuff than that out behind his shed. Maybe you should have had a swig of that stuff before writing a book.

On Russia and Trump, she sees communications, meetings and phone calls and maybe financial intermingling to validate collusion. She says it is bigger than Watergate. Remember she tipped us off in the 90’s about the vast right-wing conspiracy after her husband for years. I got your tip right here, Hillary. All 4 of ’em.

She believes Russia had a “highly sophisticated influence operation” that cost her votes. Thus, she lost the election. But back up! So in her world, Hillary was so good it took Moscow to take her down. Well, with the help of the other culprit, Comey, who she credits with costing her the election. Hey, does that mean Moscow, Putin and Comey colluded?

She’s also more interested in “cleaning her closets” than worrying about her corruption catching up to her — like jail time. Hillary talks about closets? Please remind Hillary that there aren’t any closets in Leavenworth. But so nice for her to leave Bubba clean closets for his new floozy. (she won’t be wearing jumpsuits) She will be breaking into your stash of Dom Pérignon on special occasions, like your sentencing anniversaries.

Hillary says she is deeply committed, to being involved in politics, so Democrats don’t lose ground. Good, she has a lot of experience at losing to share with them.

I think the sun has been beatin’ on that deplorable loser’s pile for too long. If Sarah Palin wrote that book, Hillary Clinton would be the first person out screaming “Bullshit!”

Iggy’s got some stalls to muck out…..Hillary should have done that before her book.

I’ll be back when politics get too squeamish for prime time pussheads.

The Intellectual Idiot

I resisted the temptation to title it Intellectualized idiot.

Here’s a really interesting piece I only read recently. It may be a bit general and comes from a very accredited thinker/writer. I guess it was quite popular but I just discovered it.

He also requires anyone sharing it do so in full crediting it as extracted from his larger “Skin in the Game”. I only post the article, there are some updates to it at the link below.

The Intellectual Yet Idiot

View story at Medium.com
Nassim Nicholas Taleb

What we have been seeing worldwide, from India to the UK to the US, is the rebellion against the inner circle of no-skin-in-the-game policymaking “clerks” and journalists-insiders, that class of paternalistic semi-intellectual experts with some Ivy league, Oxford-Cambridge, or similar label-driven education who are telling the rest of us 1) what to do, 2) what to eat, 3) how to speak, 4) how to think… and 5) who to vote for.

But the problem is the one-eyed following the blind: these self-described members of the “intelligentsia” can’t find a coconut in Coconut Island, meaning they aren’t intelligent enough to define intelligence hence fall into circularities — but their main skill is capacity to pass exams written by people like them. With psychology papers replicating less than 40%, dietary advice reversing after 30 years of fatphobia, macroeconomic analysis working worse than astrology, the appointment of Bernanke who was less than clueless of the risks, and pharmaceutical trials replicating at best only 1/3 of the time, people are perfectly entitled to rely on their own ancestral instinct and listen to their grandmothers (or Montaigne and such filtered classical knowledge) with a better track record than these policymaking goons.

Indeed one can see that these academico-bureaucrats who feel entitled to run our lives aren’t even rigorous, whether in medical statistics or policymaking. They can’t tell science from scientism — in fact in their image-oriented minds scientism looks more scientific than real science. (For instance it is trivial to show the following: much of what the Cass-Sunstein-Richard Thaler types — those who want to “nudge” us into some behavior — much of what they would classify as “rational” or “irrational” (or some such categories indicating deviation from a desired or prescribed protocol) comes from their misunderstanding of probability theory and cosmetic use of first-order models.) They are also prone to mistake the ensemble for the linear aggregation of its components as we saw in the chapter extending the minority rule.

The Intellectual Yet Idiot is a production of modernity hence has been accelerating since the mid twentieth century, to reach its local supremum today, along with the broad category of people without skin-in-the-game who have been invading many walks of life. Why? Simply, in most countries, the government’s role is between five and ten times what it was a century ago (expressed in percentage of GDP). The IYI seems ubiquitous in our lives but is still a small minority and is rarely seen outside specialized outlets, think tanks, the media, and universities — most people have proper jobs and there are not many openings for the IYI.

Beware the semi-erudite who thinks he is an erudite. He fails to naturally detect sophistry.

The IYI pathologizes others for doing things he doesn’t understand without ever realizing it is his understanding that may be limited. He thinks people should act according to their best interests and he knows their interests, particularly if they are “red necks” or English non-crisp-vowel class who voted for Brexit. When plebeians do something that makes sense to them, but not to him, the IYI uses the term “uneducated”. What we generally call participation in the political process, he calls by two distinct designations: “democracy” when it fits the IYI, and “populism” when the plebeians dare voting in a way that contradicts his preferences. While rich people believe in one tax dollar one vote, more humanistic ones in one man one vote, Monsanto in one lobbyist one vote, the IYI believes in one Ivy League degree one-vote, with some equivalence for foreign elite schools and PhDs as these are needed in the club.

More socially, the IYI subscribes to The New Yorker. He never curses on twitter. He speaks of “equality of races” and “economic equality” but never went out drinking with a minority cab driver (again, no real skin in the game as the concept is foreign to the IYI). Those in the U.K. have been taken for a ride by Tony Blair. The modern IYI has attended more than one TEDx talks in person or watched more than two TED talks on Youtube. Not only did he vote for Hillary Monsanto-Malmaison because she seems electable and some such circular reasoning, but holds that anyone who doesn’t do so is mentally ill.

The IYI has a copy of the first hardback edition of The Black Swan on his shelves, but mistakes absence of evidence for evidence of absence. He believes that GMOs are “science”, that the “technology” is not different from conventional breeding as a result of his readiness to confuse science with scientism.

Typically, the IYI get the first order logic right, but not second-order (or higher) effects making him totally incompetent in complex domains. In the comfort of his suburban home with 2-car garage, he advocated the “removal” of Gadhafi because he was “a dictator”, not realizing that removals have consequences (recall that he has no skin in the game and doesn’t pay for results).

The IYI has been wrong, historically, on Stalinism, Maoism, GMOs, Iraq, Libya, Syria, lobotomies, urban planning, low carbohydrate diets, gym machines, behaviorism, transfats, freudianism, portfolio theory, linear regression, Gaussianism, Salafism, dynamic stochastic equilibrium modeling, housing projects, selfish gene, election forecasting models, Bernie Madoff (pre-blowup) and p-values. But he is convinced that his current position is right.

The IYI is member of a club to get traveling privileges; if social scientist he uses statistics without knowing how they are derived (like Steven Pinker and psycholophasters in general); when in the UK, he goes to literary festivals; he drinks red wine with steak (never white); he used to believe that fat was harmful and has now completely reversed; he takes statins because his doctor told him to do so; he fails to understand ergodicity and when explained to him, he forgets about it soon later; he doesn’t use Yiddish words even when talking business; he studies grammar before speaking a language; he has a cousin who worked with someone who knows the Queen; he has never read Frederic Dard, Libanius Antiochus, Michael Oakeshot, John Gray, Amianus Marcellinus, Ibn Battuta, Saadiah Gaon, or Joseph De Maistre; he has never gotten drunk with Russians; he never drank to the point when one starts breaking glasses (or, preferably, chairs); he doesn’t even know the difference between Hecate and Hecuba (which in Brooklynese is “can’t tell sh**t from shinola”); he doesn’t know that there is no difference between “pseudointellectual” and “intellectual” in the absence of skin in the game; has mentioned quantum mechanics at least twice in the past five years in conversations that had nothing to do with physics.

He knows at any point in time what his words or actions are doing to his reputation.

But a much easier marker: he doesn’t even deadlift.

The Blind and the Very Blind

Let’s suspend the satirical for a minute.

IYIs fail to distinguish between the letter and the spirit of things. They are so blinded by verbalistic notions such as science, education, democracy, racism, equality, evidence, rationality and similar buzzwords that they can be easily taken for a ride. They can thus cause monstrous iatrogenics[1] without even feeling a shade of a guilt, because they are convinced that they mean well and that they can be thus justified to ignore the deep effect on reality. You would laugh at the doctor who nearly kills his patient yet argues about the effectiveness of his efforts because he lowered the latter’s cholesterol, missing that a metric that correlates to health is not quite health –it took a long time for medicine to convince its practitioners that health was what they needed to work on, not the exercise of what they thought was “science”, hence doing nothing was quite often preferable (via negativa). But yet, in a different domain, say foreign policy, a neo-con who doesn’t realize he has this mental defect would never feel any guilt for blowing up a country such as Libya, Iraq, or Syria, for the sake of “democracy”. I’ve tried to explain via negativa to a neocon: it was like trying to describe colors to someone born blind.

IYIs can be feel satisfied giving their money to a group aimed at “saving the children” who will spend most of it making powerpoint presentation and organizing conferences on how to save the children and completely miss the inconsistency.

Likewise an IYI routinely fails to make a distinction between an institution (say formal university setting and credentialization) and what its true aim is (knowledge, rigor in reasoning) –I’ve even seen a French academic arguing against a mathematician who had great (and useful) contributions because the former “didn’t go to a good school” when he was eighteen or so.

The propensity to this mental disability may be shared by all humans, and it has to be an ingrained defect, except that it disappears under skin in the game.

[1] Harm done by the healer.

See Original page source

Obama’s preface, in the unspoken

While Obama is still drafting his book, I’ll practice my satire in writing what should be his preface, if only someone slipped him a dose of truth serum. One thing you can count on is that his finished excuse-a-log won’t look like this. (unless you read between lines)

To the reader

After wearing the nom de plume of President of the United States for eight years like no one else ever– because I’ve always been sort of confused about my real name anyway — I feel I owe it to the people, who had the pleasure of putting me in that office, to tell them how right they were to bestow their blind allegiance in me.

They, and you the reader, will be eternally the better for it. Always keep believing.

No longer being able to use that particular POTUS title will not stop me from showing the same arrogance and narcissism that I always… well, that got me this far.

To prove how correct I am, my first big speaking engagement is set at 400 thousand, and the price will only go up from there. My book deal commanded an historic 60 million for my and Michele’s books. And what a bargain they got. I feel obligated to tell you in case you were surprised at the size of the number. I’m projected to be on course to being worth about 250 million in 15 years — by conservative estimates.

It was always my opinion that I should tell you what I think you need to know. And being that I have been entrusted with the sole liberty to write the history of this country, everything else should be ignored. You also should really appreciate the modest price of this book because only I know how much I spent creating it.

Enjoy.

Now that I think of it, his version of murdering the truth will probably be far worse. But his sycophants will lap it up because to admit his allergy to the truth, at this point, destroys the gigantic myth of his entire legacy.

RightRing | Bullright

Words of Wisdom from Tony Dungy

From Tony Dungy’s book “Quiet Strength”:

We might even become famous. But in the end, what will it mean?

What will people remember us for? Are other people’s lives better because of the way we lived? Did we make a difference? Did we use to the fullest the gifts and abilities God gave us? Did we give our best effort, and did we do it for the right reasons?

God’s definition of success is really one of significance –the significant difference our lives can make in the lives of others. This significance doesn’t show up in win-loss records, long resumes, or the trophies on our mantels. It’s found in the hearts and lives of those we’ve come across who are in some way better because of the way we lived.

See: http://www.coachdungy.com/product/quiet-strength/
Interviews: http://www.coachdungy.com/video-interviews/

I saw this quote around but it only made me want to get the book.

Stories R US

I was going to do a post on Obama’s statements and threats. But why give them more attention if we aren’t going to do anything about them anyway? They get plenty.

I thought about doing a post on Hillary’s latest lies. But they are just like all the other lies, and all the other posts. All blend into the septic stew.

I thought about doing one on the real principles Jesus espoused, you know, opposed to lessons liberals harp about. Nah. He drove the money changers from the temple and look where they went.

I thought about doing one of my trademark satires but they end up being too true.

Well, I did notice something weird about this presidential race. Everyone says it’s about the outsiders vs the establishment. It probably is; though this election also seems to be about story lines. Most every Republican candidate has their own story line they are pushing. Not to mention most of them also have a book.

They have constructed or extorted these story lines so that, in turn, it is not an election about a certain individual, it is about the story he/she is promoting. I’m led to think that we are supposed to vote for best story line. It’s not just an outsider story. It’s an outsider, non-politician, neuro-surgeon. It’s about a mega-mogul, celebrity, real estate developer and builder.

So with that background, someone like Cruz has a problem that even his story line is not that big of a deal. Then you have Carly vying for any attention as a woman and business executive turned politician. We’re not asked as much to judge their qualifications as their degree of separation from establishment and their creative story line. Some are naturally better at promoting their story lines than others.

I wonder if we have not now entered the age of the story lines in politics? Is that the natural extension of identity politics? I think it might be. Look on the ither side and you have Hillary running as … are you ready for it…a woman. Then she adds that she would be the ultimate outsider as the first woman. And she already has her own story line which she doesn’t even have to promote. Everyone knows it and does it for her. So the first woman, who was also first lady, married to the serial rapist president doesn’t really work but all the other parts of it are there for the extorting. Now, whether they planned or want it to, this becomes a battle of story lines. That is if you follow the tactics the left uses in politics. Obama was much the same way. The Kenyan, Indonesian black kid rise to president. (we’re still trying to digest that story line and some of us cannot)

Now Trump takes that to the next logical stage. He gave a speech wherein he goes on a rant talking about the details of Ben Carson’s story line — in brief: angry poor black kid to Christian, to top surgeon, to candidate. Media has already gone all-in after Carson’s story. Knocking the candidate’s story is a twofer for the media, it also attacks his trustability polls that are higher than anyone’s. Of course Jeb Bush’s story line that he tries to ignore is the third in line to the Bush dynasty. So instead he promotes his preferred story line, and also tells it in Spanish — a real plus in his case. That includes leaving out the part about Bloomberg’s Foundation promoting abortion around the globe. He tries to make it as attractive as possible.

So we also have Rubio pushing his Cuban ancestry, only in America, story-book story line. Christie pushes his tough guy prosecutor thug image. Trump pushes his anti-P/C story line which allows him the freedom to say just about anything that in some way fits or works in his favor. People seem to like that ballsy approach even if they occasionally blush. Kasich has his own story line, a player all the way. Oh, Carly promotes the ‘woman’ secretary to CEO, to president story. Fill in the others. Cruz may be out-storied.

Is it not about character or ability anymore but about the story line? You can expect that blunt approach from Democrats in the general election.(who are still searching for a black or Hispanic transsexual woman candidate – man doesn’t work) Whoever promotes their story line narrative the best wins. Bernie Sanders has his own story working. He and Hillary are vying for historical firsts. Trump is an expert promoting his. Do people just want a story? Are we bored with positions and policy preferring a narrative instead?

RightRing | Bullright

Israel’s cultural stigmatism

Every once in a while — all right more frequent than that — it is time to get out and see what some of the biggest mouthpieces are saying about key events going on outside the beltway-fed silos or mainstream American news cycles.

Whoops, did I just say mainstream America? That should be a typo since what the left’s acolytes increasingly lump into “mainstream” are the radical assertions trickled down from ivory towers on high, cultivated then fertilized further by hotbeds of hatred activists for anyone with opposing views to their uber-centric, neo-Marxist ideology.

Gaza’s kids affected psychologically, physically by lifetime of violence

Al Jazeera asks medical experts about the psychological, physical and generational effects of war on Gaza’s youth
July 31, 2014 | Al Jazeera

Beyond the immediate loss in Gaza — destruction of property, infrastructure, and the deaths of more than 1,600 people, mostly civilians — Israel’s onslaught will have long-term mental and physical effects on the Palestinian children who survived weeks of airstrikes and naval and tank shelling.

Many of them watched as family members were killed and homes, schools and mosques bombarded. Others suffered life-altering injuries. Israel’s military campaign may also affect the unborn, as mothers and fathers struggle with traumatic stress, health experts warn. [more]

I challenge you after reading these clips, to take a look at the link from Al Jazeera to see the academic level of their Leftist diagnosis of the Israel-Palestinian situation, which is the thought they are trying to mainstream. They’ve been somewhat successful at it.

Dr. Jesse Ghannam, clinical professor of psychiatry and global health sciences at the University of California at San Francisco School of Medicine:

Psychological impact

Even before the current military offensive, young Gazans bore the mental scars of years under siege and previous episodes of bombardment. After the 2012 war, the rate of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) among children in Gaza doubled, according to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency, which provides assistance for Palestinian refugees. Mental health experts fear that the latest bombardment may create detrimental repercussions too difficult for children to overcome.

Palestinian children in Gaza are exposed to more violence in their lifetime than any other people, any other children, anywhere in the world. If you look at children right now who are 10 years old, they’ve been through Cast Lead in 2008 and 2009, the invasion in 2012 and now the invasion and destruction in 2014, in addition to the siege. If you look at the statistics, for example, even before Cast Lead, 80 percent of Palestinian children in Gaza have witnessed some sort of violence against them, a friend or a family member. And now you’re getting to the point where probably close to 99 percent of children in Gaza are being exposed to a level of violence where they have seen family members be killed, murdered, burned alive. There’s nothing like the levels of traumatic exposure that any child in the world has ever been exposed to on a chronic and daily basis. – more Al Jazeera

Here is a llnk from the Salon magazine arguing against the coverage in the NYT of the Israel-Palestine conflict. They blame the Times for getting it wrong by leading people to think it is a matter of various factors and social media that lead Palestinian youth to the violence like the recent attacks on Israelis. They take big issue that this be blamed on anything but Israel. Imagine that, even the Times doesn’t satisfy their anti-Israel appetite.

It may be hard for us to consider that the Times falls short in carrying the Leftists’ water, but this illustrates that dynamic I’m talking about where even the Leftists are not far enough Left to satisfy them. Thus, the whole push to mainstream, further, the narrative of the new Leftist thought. And they will have their way, as they usually do, even if incrementally, driving the Times and other Leftist mouthpieces into their narrative. After all, when they get academia and virtually all their other liberal institutions to drive a point it usually has results.

So just for a flavor of that high-brow prodding toward their “mainstream” view, here is a small sampling:

If not placing the blame on social media and Palestinian youth, defenders of Israel’s policies argue that the cause of the violence goes far back in history, to an inbred, and therefore a historical hatred toward Jews. Such an argument also says therefore that the Occupation is not to blame. Maybe not, but how then to ignore the fact that the very worst of the violence we have seen through the years has been in the West Bank and Gaza, and that it is occurring now? – Salon

 

Then you have from a blogger on the topic, what passes now more for liberal mainstream, an overview of the mainstreaming activism of pro-Palestinian thought.

Mondoweiss

The leftwing movement of criticism of Israel is getting more and more mainstream by the second. Everyone is walking the path; they’re just getting there a little later. The Washington Post, a hotbed of neoconservative ideas for the last 15 years, has another article harshly critical of Israel today, written by an Israeli. And guess what: that article along with yesterday’s article by the two prestige Jewish academics calling for boycott of Israel are the two “most-read” articles on the Post list this morning! –

    See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/2015/10/washington-unrepairable-society#sthash.zqkR5pXe.dpuf

This feeds into the next topic, the BDS activist movement. As it says, this is increasingly becoming mainstream opinion/thought, at least from leftists. They get louder to drive the narrative and seem to think the more they promote it as such, the more it becomes a self-fulfilled prophecy. Seeing is believing.

That racist flag

What did I learn this week, in August 2015, in case anyone is interested? I learned the POW_MIA flag was racist Well, now I know because someone tells us so.

So according to a columnist in Newsweek, the POW-MIA flag is racist and should be pulled down, ASAP. Mediaite

Newsweek reprinted a column by journalist Rick Perlstein on Tuesday arguing that the POW/MIA flag had racist origins.

“You know that racist flag?” he writes in “The Forgotten Story of America’s Other Racist Flag.” “The one that supposedly honors history but actually spreads a pernicious myth? And is useful only to venal right-wing politicians who wish to exploit hatred by calling it heritage? It’s past time to pull it down.”

More http://www.mediaite.com/online/tpm-columnist-declares-powmia-flag-racist/

There just is no limits to what the left will do, to obviously offend people. Apparently there is much forgotten in his mind. I’m learning a lot of shiit. But a cautionary note, he has more in store from his new book being hawked by many on the Left.

And the Federalist has a piece on it.

Someone found a worm in the vino

Who said this?

“The IRS targeting the Tea Party, the Justice Department’s seizure of AP phone records and [Fox reporter] James Rosen’s e-mails — all these scandals. Obama’s allowed his hatred for his enemies to screw him the way Nixon did,” she raged, the book says, adding that she called the president “incompetent and feckless.” More >

That would be Hillary.(maybe it was truth serum?)

Hillary does a better job promoting Klein’s book than she does her own.

Incensed by the use of “Evil”-pt 3 of 3

Say a doctor treats a man with Aids but ignores the disease he is stricken with and its nature. No doctor would do that. It is akin to treating the symptoms and not the disease to ignore the evil nature and its factor. Granted it may not win you points with Muslims(or fellow academics), but one withholds or censors the term evil at his/her peril.

Column continued: Is Isis Evil? 3rd part — [see 2 ; 1]

We can analyze the ways its violent tactics are effective for its purposes given the local power dynamics, so that we can also better understand its weak spots. And we can ask how it is that normal men — men who were not born evil — get turned into monsters, so that we can work to change the structures that produce terrorists over the long-term instead of locking ourselves into an endlessly repeated, short-term policy of “killing fanatics” until they are gone.

Trying to understand something isn’t the same as trying to justify or excuse it. That’s a basic mistake, and a costly one.

As Jane Harman, president of the Woodrow International Center for Scholars, recently wrote: “We can’t counter radical narratives if we don’t understand the motives of the radicalized.”

Nonetheless, trying to understand evil is an offense. It is an offense to everything we hold dear, because understanding — that is, true and effective understanding — must bring us close to the other, must help us see the world through their eyes.

That is a painful, offensive process, and that is exactly what we must do.

See: http://www.cnn.com/2014/08/22/opinion/dawes-isis-evil/

We can analyze the ways its violent tactics are effective for its purposes given the local power dynamics, so that we can also better understand its weak spots. And we can ask how it is that normal men — men who were not born evil — get turned into monsters, so that we can work to change the structures that produce terrorists over the long term instead of locking ourselves into an endlessly repeated, short-term policy of “killing fanatics” until they are gone.

What all is wrong with that? The government, military and CIA do analytics on their effectiveness and there are documentations. But if we do not have the leaders who act on those facts, we have our heads in the sand dunes. “Local power dynamics” is a problem.

You treat it as a social services matter, but this community(and ME region) has had these problems for many decades. Then you expect to “unmake” the results over their desires and will. If those in the neighborhood do not care, how can you undo a situation hundreds of years in the making? Generations of terrorists were weened on it.

We have also given them the incentives to improve and reform these “dynamics” but it falls on deaf ears. Apparently they don’t want to and have reasons to do otherwise. Put it this way, some of them like it this way, some of them don’t, but yet another part that is interested in reform wants to amplify those same dynamics many times over.

It doesn’t take a majority, only a fractional faction hell bent on any means necessary to do it. Change the structures? The structures are just the way they like them — and not even big or bad enough for some. Blaming the structures brings us right back to blaming, or understanding something other than the central causes of terrorism. It is evil.

Trying to understand something isn’t the same as trying to justify or excuse it. That’s a basic mistake, and a costly one.

Oh yes it can be the same thing. Attempts at understanding can lead to rationalizations for why they do it, and lead you to error. Human beings are easily capable of such rationalizations. Thereby making excuses for the evil conduct.

As Jane Harman, president of the Woodrow International Center for Scholars, recently wrote: “We can’t counter radical narratives if we don’t understand the motives of the radicalized.”

Sounds nice. So we must argue against another academic. We do have to understand and know the nature of evil that drives them, too, and its source. But that includes recognizing the evil. Their motives are part of the evil we face.

Nonetheless, trying to understand evil is an offense. It is an offense to everything we hold dear, because understanding — that is, true and effective understanding — must bring us close to the other, must help us see the world through their eyes.

That is a painful, offensive process, and that is exactly what we must do.

I realized some limitations to understanding “evil”. But there is real danger in trying to understand the people who perpetrate and spread this evil and their sordid history, across borders — against those structural boundaries — absent the evil involved. Pain or not.

Summary:

He said that evil is inhuman so best not even try to understand it. But then he also wants to treat these people from a humane perspective to counter it. As if applied humane nature will overcome the inherent evil in them. Now there’s a fool’s errand. You don’t get it do you? How do you do that with people who’s military strategy is summed up in deception or lying? What are you really going to understand about them and their social fabric of evil woven throughout the region? People who put severed heads on spits do not generally offer much in the way of working therapy. When an animal is rabid we don’t just say let me find out why he got it? The first defense is to destroy it and find out where its been etc. And yes we do understand the disease of rabies and know what it can do, and take precautions.

Handling this as if it were some humanitarian social ill would be a mistake. We know what goes into it. Finally, ignoring the central factor of their radicalization, their religion, would be another huge mistake. Playing social worker with terrorists is not a treatment, it’s a recipe for disaster. And how many months or years would that take? We don’t have that kind of time, when the very humanity you savor hangs in the balance. When there seems to be more urgency for Ebola epidemic than there is for terrorism, something is askew. We do understand enough about that culture to know how it works. And then it uses the most powerful addiction on the planet, blood. What is there to understand about that? Let’s not over complicate it, and its evil.

What he is asking us to do is to play social worker and therapist, namely to people who hate us. I notice he didn’t offer any solutions other than ‘apply the ointment, liberally’.

We don’t have enough beds or an asylum large enough to house all these patients. That’s what he has done, converted them into patients —albeit unthinking sick ones.

Terrorism: “The use of violence and intimidation in the pursuit of political aims.” But we do not have a simple matter of terrorism. We have a religion sponsored, state-sponsored, caliphate-centric, political, ideologically rooted, Islam-driven terrorism.

From ABC:
That includes the U.S. government. “No one definition of terrorism has gained universal acceptance,” the State Department said in a report on world terrorism in 2000.
The key elements to terrorism are obvious to many — violence, non-combatant targets, intention of spreading fear, and political aims. But crafting a watertight, commonly accepted definition has proven difficult.
The State Department’s definition holds that only sub-national groups, not states themselves, can commit acts of terrorism. It states the violence must be politically motivated, but does not mention instilling or spreading fear.
The FBI looks to the Code of Federal Regulations definition: “The unlawful use of force and violence against persons or property to intimidate or coerce a government, the civilian population, or any segment thereof, in furtherance of political or social objectives.”
“In a nutshell, [terrorism] is the threat and use of both psychological and physical force in violation of international law, by state and sub-state agencies for strategic and political goals,” says Yonah Alexander, a terrorism expert and director of the Institute for Studies in International Terrorism at the State University of New York.
“No ifs, ands, or buts,” he adds.

RightRing | Bullright

Incensed by the use of “Evil”- pt 2 of 3

In the second part he makes it clear he wants to separate undesirable “understanding” of evil from the preferable understanding of the terrorist culture, and their environment, etc. (Part 3 follows.)

Column continued: Is Isis Evil? 2nd of 3

The fact is, there are few things more dangerous now than allowing ourselves to think that way. [like Goldberg: “They’re evil. They do obviously evil things for evil ends.”]

To resist ISIS and, perhaps more importantly, the larger social forces it represents, the U.S. will need more than a collective psychological readiness to injure, and more than bombs.

The Wall Street Journal editorialized that this evil ideology will only be stopped when “enough of its fanatics have been killed.” But if we’ve learned anything as a nation since our “shock and awe” campaign in Iraq, it is this: While invasions and bombing can be effective in the short-term, they are not durable solutions to terror-based violence.

Even if U.S. military force could effectively destroy ISIS, there will be similar groups waiting in the wings. If we are to have any hope of preventing the spread of extremist ideologies, we must do more than bomb the believers. We must understand them. We must be willing to continue thinking.

How is ISIS able to achieve the support it needs? What drives people into its ranks? What social pressures and needs, what political and regional vacuums, make it possible for a group like this to thrive? We can choose to answer these questions in two ways.

We can say they are evil people doing evil things for evil ends. Or we can do the hard work of understanding the context that made them, so that we can create a context that makes them.

See: http://www.cnn.com/2014/08/22/opinion/dawes-isis-evil/

“The fact is, there are few things more dangerous now than allowing ourselves to think that way.”

Than like Goldberg: “They’re evil. They do obviously evil things for evil ends.” – I think denial and distractions are pretty dangerous. We haven’t heard why that is so dangerous.

To resist ISIS and, perhaps more importantly, the larger social forces it represents, the U.S. will need more than a collective psychological readiness to injure, and more than bombs.

So he’s leading to his big point. We do need all our assets, but to leave out an important one of calling something what it is and identifying it psychologically and strategically is key. That is before those bombs are dropped. Dismissing the sinister evil nature of it gets us nowhere.

Even if U.S. military force could effectively destroy ISIS, there will be similar groups waiting in the wings. If we are to have any hope of preventing the spread of extremist ideologies, we must do more than bomb the believers. We must understand them. We must be willing to continue thinking.

Yes, we keep thinking and they keep plotting, undeterred. Sound like a plan? We don’t have to prove the better thinkers, we have to prove to be ready and denial is not a strategy. We already are planning and thinking, so are they. Our ability and readiness are a deterrent. Has history not taught you want it can take to end that? Force is about the only thing they understand. A new one rises, so what is the alternative?

How is ISIS able to achieve the support it needs? What drives people into its ranks? What social pressures and needs, what political and regional vacuums, make it possible for a group like this to thrive? We can choose to answer these questions in two ways.

It’s the questions, stupid. They are loaded, try unpacking them. We see and know how its possible, more importantly so do they. Their hatred and religion are the driving dynamics. Those are two obstacles in your path. Now you show me your protocol for that, since you believe in it so much, and I may start listening. Either deal with that or live in denial.

We can say they are evil people doing evil things for evil ends.[Goldberg] Or we can do the hard work of understanding the context that made them, so that we can create a context that unmakes them.

I wanted to laugh and couldn’t. “Hard work of understanding the context”? Well, do you know the context of the last 1400 years, which might have something to do with this repetition thing? We understand if we paid attention. Do you understand their context of warfare and deception being sacred things? Do you understand their tenants to lie as necessary to pursue and achieve their age-old goals, that context? Or is some other fabricated one in your own mind or someone else’s, which claims to have caused this?

What context or circumstances? Well, maybe we could undo the entire civilized world to satisfy them. Or maybe we could just accept their rules for the world to appease them – give it over to them? That might work. But outside that, you don’t have a plan, or even a theory either, on how to unmake this evil incarnate. Get it yet? We are back to examining symptoms not dealing with the disease.

First off any real solution for it would have to come from within. Except last I checked, Islam does not self-correct. Its the dirty little secret no one wants to mention. And trying to sterilize this barbaric terrorism from Islam is like trying to separate Naziism from The Third Reich. Btw, an awful lot of people have already devoted countless time and energy to this problem. You are not the first one to come along, but might be the most recent to whistle past the graveyard.

Our great tool is right here in the idea sphere. But as long as we are saying things like understanding and what is their reasons for radicalization we are wasting our time. Been there done that. If we don’t understand the central radical factor, you miss the point and end up in denial.

Part 3 follows…

RightRing | Bullright

Incensed by the use of “Evil”

Should we use the term or shouldn’t we, and why?
Have we gone that far? Yep.

This is obviously an important subject but also provocative. There may not be simple answers but there might be limitations on conversation, at least with liberals. Here is my attempt at the topic, which is also a rebuttal to a column on CNN.

I soon realized others have taken issue with it, and one a conservative he singled out in it. I didn’t read the others until after. I included them below in case you want to check them out too. The subject deserves consideration. (It is three parts) You can read his entire column at link. But it could irk you, as liberal academics do.

Should we call ISIS ‘evil’?

By James Dawes | August 22, 2014

Editor’s note: James Dawes, director of the Program in Human Rights at Macalester College in St. Paul, Minnesota, is the author of “Evil Men” (Harvard University Press). The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author.

(CNN) — When most people look at ISIS, they see the incarnation of evil. Among its many horrific acts, the Islamic militant group beheaded American journalist James Foley and posted the video this week in retaliation for U.S. airstrikes in Iraq. The Pope typically protests violence, but he implied that he supports the use of military force to combat ISIS. Even al Qaeda says ISIS is too violent. Across the political spectrum, public officials and pundits have characterized them as “savages,” a “cancer” and the “face of evil.”

Is ISIS evil?

The problem with that question is that the answer is as easy as it is useless. Yes, ISIS is evil and must be stopped. Saying so over and over again could very well make it harder to stop them.

There is only one good reason to denounce a group as evil — because you plan to injure them, and calling them evil makes it psychologically easier to do so. “Evil” is the most powerful word we have to prepare ourselves to kill other people comfortably.

The flip side is that “evil” is also a word that stops us from thinking.

There is no point in trying to understand evil because it is, in the most typical phrasing, “inhuman,” “senseless” or “beyond comprehension.” It is a fool’s quest to analyze the local realities and strategic imperatives of unthinking savages. There is something almost offensive about trying to understand such evil.

National Review’s Jonah Goldberg tried to shame those who are trying to think seriously about ISIS. In a recent tweet, he mocked the attempt to understand ISIS in its social and political context, suggesting that we should focus instead on one fact: “They’re evil. They do obviously evil things for evil ends.”

See: http://www.cnn.com/2014/08/22/opinion/dawes-isis-evil/

The first paragraph generally gets a pass as fairly matter-of-fact.

The word evil may get tossed around, but I think most people know it when they see it.

“Easy” to call it evil, but “useless?” I don’t agree. Their acts speak for themselves, and useless? The repeated use of the term evil makes it “harder to stop them”? So the answer is to stop using the term, so we can stop them. Say what? Thus, evil is a useless descriptor. I think he expects one to make a case just for using the term.

Now be careful about making all-inclusive statements:

There is only one good reason to denounce a group as evil — because you plan to injure them, and calling them evil makes it psychologically easier to do so. “Evil” is the most powerful word we have to prepare ourselves to kill other people comfortably.

Only one reason? I disagree. There are more than one reason. He is saying our use of the term is based on our intent. He ascribes our motives and intent to the use of the word. What about the evil ISIS? (he’s more concerned with us) A “powerful word”? It’s a powerful concept or force.

I have called some things evil without feeling the reflex to kill them. Likewise, a hunter shoots an animal not because he sees it as evil. I used the term about someone’s actions for years, but never, ever had a desire to kill or harm them. It surely was not my motive for using the word. Wrong. At times I did not wish them the best, that’s quite different. Even if there were reasons not to use the term, one needs to call something what it is – not based on what you want to do to it. So that doesn’t work, nor is it 100% correct. A motive might be to call attention to it or a person, or an effort to demonize them; but that is not an effort to go string them up on a tree. There is room and need for calling some things or people evil though, it is not meaningless.

There are legitimate reasons to oppose and fight it based on what it is. It is a moral repugnance. The ISIS evil is not just a criminal offense either. Anger is justifiable.

“The flip side is that “evil” is also a word that stops us from thinking.”

Use of the word stops me from thinking? Ludicrous and wrong. Now maybe evil nature could prevent its host from thinking? Just suppose it gets easier for these people to do what they’re doing without thinking — searing off any conscience. Isn’t that more the case? And people have given a lot of thought to opposing evil, even predicting its moves. Maybe some are obsessed about understanding it? That is reason to be careful trying to fully understand it. I would agree there is a danger inherent in trying to understand it that: to understand evil is to excuse it[LM]. The point is in trying to understand it you can rationalize reasons for it.

Apparently there is no point trying to understand evil:

There is no point in trying to understand evil because it is, in the most typical phrasing, “inhuman,” “senseless” or “beyond comprehension.” It is a fool’s quest to analyze the local realities and strategic imperatives of unthinking savages. There is something almost offensive about trying to understand such evil.

I don’t believe understanding is the cure. However, no point trying because it is inhuman? That’s pretty absurd. I’m not looking for explanations though. We have enough of that and call it what it is. I agree that what these people are doing is inhuman — what I call anti-human. But that doesn’t change the evil nature. Islamic terrorists are biologically humans. Savages, yes – unthinking, no. But they are taught and aspire to this evil. Sure they have turned themselves into barbaric animals. True some evil is beyond our comprehension and understanding — which is why the objective is not to understand it. Many people do not want to get into the mindset of that evil, and probably never will, but that does not make inquiry irrelevant. From one extreme to the other.

So are Islamic terrorists just zombies incapable of cognitive thought? No. We see what they do think about. They are actively establishing and running a caliphate – of evil but a caliphate. It takes some scheming evil thought.

Then don’t even consider their strategic imperatives? Is that asinine? Are we supposed to be numb to it or zombies ourselves? Of course you have to consider its strategy. And it wants to kill us as part of its grand strategy. But don’t bother with that.

“It is a fool’s quest to analyze the local realities and strategic imperatives of unthinking savages. There is something almost offensive about trying to understand such evil”

The reasoning here seems to be not to label it evil. Maybe this type of sinister illusion prevents its defining, and the application? Maybe a waste of time is what human nature would like us to think? At least know enough to guard against and predict it as possible.

I remember many people taking the criminal approach to terrorism pre-9/11. But possibly that itself is a passive participation in evil, to dismiss it as just another criminal deed.(that requires ignoring a lot) People do grow tired of an overuse of a term. As they say: “all that is needed for evil to flourish is that good men do nothing”. How would you fight something without understanding what it is?

I have a huge problem with other words there, like calling them unthinking. Now we have gone from one extreme to another — from scheming evil to unthinking. In fact, it would appear that a lot of thought goes into their actions. And there is a deliberate nature to it. It is actually work to do what these savages do. But unthinking? Unaware of what they are doing? I don’t think either works. It seems as systematic as what Nazis were doing. Then there is the political motives, which are at the very definition of terrorism. And not for one minute would I ascribe that they didn’t know what they are doing. Just the opposite, they incorporate a psychological propaganda campaign designed to affect their opponents.

Something offensive about trying to understand such evil. We should be offended by it, it is evil after all. But calling understanding a fool’s errand? We had to understand some of what created Hitler and the Third Reich did, and its nature, to see it doesn’t take hold again. After WWII, the Germans were led through the camps to see what their society had done. It is called denial. I”m certain it left many with questions how all this came to be? And who exactly permitted it? Crushing and tough questions.

I find that people who refuse or don’t want to use the term evil have an agenda , and often a reason for it. To recap, he has attacked both sides: he attacked using the word, and also attacked even trying to understand it. Though he did admit the evil involved. That would be hard for a person with a new book on Evil Men to deny. Well, he would not want to deny evil, having written on it. But don’t bother trying to understand it, something that is inhuman. When evil inhabits men then humanity is involved. That’s a different story from understanding perps and terrorists’ social culture.

In no particular order, here are the bullet points:

  • Do not use the word – evil.
  • Do not even try to understand it.
  • Will make you stop thinking.
  • Using it will cause us to lose the battle
  • The only reason to use the word is to kill the person or thing.
  • Don’t consider its strategy or goals
  • It is offensive to try to understand it
  • He criticizes the ‘evil is as evil does’ notion

As background, I include a statement about his book Evil Men. His description gives a flavor for his treatment of the subject. But he is talking about evil men, not ideology or ideas, and apparently labeled them evil based on their deeds.

As readers, what are we to do when we read such testimony? Can torture narratives teach us anything? Isn’t the endless circling around stories of atrocities a form of obscenity itself? When does the fight for justice and truth end and human rights pornography begin? Evil Men is painful to read. Horror and terror are etched into every page. Atrocities are reflected upon – sometimes calmly; other times with cold fury. The book’s author, James Dawes, forces us to think carefully about the ethics of telling stories – true ones – about acts of staggering cruelty. Disturbingly, it is a book about friendship, too. When we are brought face to face with men who raped, tortured and murdered men, women and children, where should we look? Straight into their eyes, he advises.

Other columns:

Jonah Goldberg’s rebuttal None Dare Call It Evil?
Kevin Jackson also takes him to task:CNN writer implies calling ISIS evil is a bad idea
Conservative Firing Line took issue with him Liberal cautions that U.S. faces a danger in calling ISIS ‘evil’

Part 2
RightRing | Bullright

School censors parent upset over explicit book content

Dad handcuffed for protesting graphic-sex book

Cop takes action at school-board meeting

    William Baer, a parent upset over a reading selection in Gilford, was arrested and charged with disorderly conduct when police said he did not leave a school board meeting after being asked.

A parent who complained about a book assigned to his daughter at Gilford High School in Gilford, New Hampshire, was arrested and taken away in handcuffs from a school board meeting for refusing to “be quiet” when repeatedly admonished by a board member.

William Baer, whose ninth-grade daughter last week was assigned the book “Nineteen Minutes,” came to the meeting to protest the book’s assignment and the district’s failure to notify parents the book contained graphic descriptions of “rough sex” between teens.

According to the Laconia Daily Sun, Baer challenged the board to read aloud the controversial portion of “Nineteen Minutes” during the meeting, but school officials refused.

Before speaking, Baer was told he had two minutes to speak.

Baer spoke beyond the time limit and sat down but then exchanged words with another parent who approved of the book.

“So what is the remedy here?” Baer asked.

The board said it would not take questions on the matter.

“Sir, would you please be respectful of the other people?” a school board member responded.

“Like you’re respectful of my daughter, right? And my children?” he countered.

“Please, be quiet,” admonished the board member.

A police officer then arrived at the scene, instructing Baer to leave with him.

“You are going to arrest me because I violated the two-minute rule?” the father said. “I guess you are going to have to arrest me.”

But Baer did get support from other parents.

Sarah Carrignan said, according to the Sun, that she was “‘utterly appalled that this was acceptable.”

“My son should never have had the book in his hand.”

Part of the problem was that when the book was used previously in the school, parents were notified and asked for permission for their children to participate.

The school this year didn’t notify parents until after students already were assigned the book and given access to the material.

Gilford Police Lt. James Leach, who was at the meeting, ordered Baer to leave the meeting and then handcuffed the parent. Reports say Baer was ticketed for disorderly conduct. MORE

H/T to Dave
 

Most people may have heard about it. If it was a school authorized book, then the school obviously purchased the books. So tax money is paying for objectionable material?

But wait, there was a similar story at WND, 08/04/2005. While not the exact same thing, the same narrative played out in Massachusetts .

Father faces trial over school’s ‘pro-gay’ book

Arrested after objecting to kindergartner’s reading material

A Massachusetts man faces a court trial over a dispute about the teaching of homosexuality in his son’s kindergarten class.David Parker, of Lexington, spent a night in jail and was charged with criminal trespassing after refusing to leave a scheduled meeting with school officials April 27, unless they gave him the option of pulling his child out of certain classes.

Parker says the officials had indicated they would agree to a notification policy then suddenly refused. He insists he has done nothing wrong and is willing to contest the charge rather than plea-bargain.

At a hearing Tuesday, Parker’s trial date was set for Sept. 21.

The Lexington School Board contends Parker deliberately set out to be arrested and make national headlines.

Parker’s attorney, Jeffrey Denner, rejected that claim as supporters picketed outside the courthouse.

The dispute began last spring when Parker’s then-5-year-old son brought home a book to be shared with his parents titled, “Who’s in a Family?” The optional reading material, which came in a “Diversity Book Bag,” depicted at least two households led by homosexual partners.

“There’s a larger issue here locally and nationally and internationally about the role of family and what kind of encroachments government can make into children’s and people’s lives,” Denner told reporters.

More http://www.wnd.com/2005/08/31618/
 

Now the treatment is virtually the same — even if the details are different. One in Massachusetts and the other in New Hampshire, years apart. But the message is the same to concerned parents: object to book content and you could get ‘booked’.

There is also another glaring contrast. That was the 9/11 Benghazi attack where they injected a video as a motive for it and violent protests in Egypt etc. Whether it was the cause of protests or not, they injected a video as a de facto cause, ran out publicly talking about it, then rounded up and arrested the guy who made it.

Notice how quick the federal government condemned the video content for being objectionable to Muslims or Islamists? But if you are a parent of a grade school or middle school kid where the content in a book and their handling of it is objectionable, they go after the parents for offending the school by criticizing the content. Off to jail for objecting to content. See how due process works?

Then throw in one more contradiction. The State Dep. and Obama wasted no time running out to condemn content of a video. But so many Christians have been killed and persecuted throughout the Middle East, with the worst violence and cleansing being committed. Yet silence comes from our government. No long speeches, dialogue or condemnation and criticism. Maybe speaking out would offend the persecutors? Now hundreds of girls are kidnapped, and the terrorists come out making threats about what they are going to do to them. Officials struggle to find the right words to condemn it.

But don’t worry, if parents object to content in the schools, they’re going to jail. The disparity could not be greater if it was intentional. Wait…

RightRing | Bullright

A new book

A new book just released is called “Heaven Sent: The Heather Miller Story”.

It is the story of a child diagnosed with cancer and her family. It’s a tribute to this child, who may have been beyond her years; and through it how her story touched many others. Authored by a Pittsburg sports writer and her mother, Wendy. Almost certain to touch you in one way or another.

Heaven Sent

I don’t believe it’s available in stores.
Here is the link to publisher: http://www.milsonpublishing.com/

*** Proceeds go to children and their families battling cancer. ***