56 thoughts on “Open Forum!

    • Not sure abiut the airline, but in this specific instance whoever is doing the reporting is incompetent.

      The one element of the disease that could affect the airline’s decision is if it is contagious, and that is not mentioned anywhere in the article.

      • Ichthyosis is genetic, and NOT contagious. My late wife suffered from a mild case of it, as well as plaque psoriasis on her hands and feet.

          • What if airline employees asked all passengers if they were travelling with a communicable disease and required a Dr.’s note. Would it be irresponsible to accept their word.

            At least with a skin condition one can be asked.

      • It was mentioned that it was a genetic disorder and therefore not contagious.

        The story says AA worked to book her on another flight without saying if a doctor was contacted. If she can be rebooked why was she removed in the first place.

        • She was removed because American Airlines felt that United was getting all of the glory after beating Dr Dao and they wanted in on the game. (Yes, that was sarcasm).

          The problem is that the front line employees at the major airlines have absolute authority and the airline doesn’t seem to put customer service at the top of their priorities.

    • I profoundly disagree. Does that mean everyone with vitiligo need to carry a note as well? I’m sure the NAACP won’t complain when a black man with white splotches on his skin gets thrown of the plane for not having a note.

      Sorry, JP. The explanation she gave should have been sufficient for all concerned, and anyone with an irrational fear of her condition should’ve been given the choice to stay or leave. We have to have more sense than to treat our citizens with infirmities as lepers, it’s intolerable.

      • Someone with Ebola? “I’m fine, take my word for it.” Someone with measles? “I’m fine, take my word for it.”

        You see how the airline is in an untenable situation. Do they let everyone on regardless of health? Remember these are gate agents, not doctors who graduated medical school. Someone who looks similar to the lady in the story gets on an airplane, what would you do in the agent’s place? Let them on? Wrong, this hypothetical passenger has a highly contagious disease; 30 people get very sick and 3 die from it.

        • Okay, well, ebola victims are generally outwardly indistinguishable from a flu victim. So exactly how would we enforce it in such a case — no doctor having diagnosed ebola would allow the sufferer out of the hospital?

          In this case, it was the symptom that was the problem, (the skin lesion was noticeable), but are we going to require doctors’ excuses for a case of poison ivy, or other innocuous non-contagious condition causing visible skin lesions — say like eczema or psoriasis? Because we can’t enforce a ban on everyone with a sneeze without a note — it would be economically infeasible for the airline. I suppose if an airline wanted to, it could enforce a ban on travelers with visible or symptomatic illnesses, even genetic conditions, but I doubt it would go well with the public.

          I agree, it could go badly if someone with a severely contagious disease gets on a plane undiagnosed or only mildly symptomatic, but that’s simply a risk we take as passengers. We are trusting our fellow travellers not to infect us, because we have little choice.

          Even doctors are imperfect and may misdiagnose a serious contagious disease and mistakenly provide a note. I’m sure that note would be great comfort to the ghosts and family of those killed by the subsequent infection.

  1. What am I going to miss today? You chose what is probably the worst day in recent memory for me to go into deep involved Internet debates.

    Have fun!

  2. I believe it is time we develop a new definition for the words racist and racism. The current Miriam Webster definition below fails to address all that these words may embody today.

    1 : a belief that race is the primary determinant of human traits and capacities and that racial differences produce an inherent superiority of a particular race
    2a : a doctrine or political program based on the assumption of racism and designed to execute its principles b : a political or social system founded on racism
    3 : racial prejudice or discrimination

    The definition that race is the primary determinant of human traits and capacities produce inherently superior or inferior beings is faulty because far too often the complaint about someone, or that some statement someone has made is racist fails to address if any harm associated with the behavior has occurred or will occur. If a person utters a racial epithet at me I must ask how has this harmed me? What is the difference between being called a cracker, a kike, or a whop any different than being called ugly, stupid or some other pejorative; absolutely none. The intent is to make me feel bad about myself. So, if I allow myself to feel bad or less about myself who has really made me feel inferior; me.

    If I say that I don’t find white women attractive, is that a racist statement because the simplistic implication is that I see white women as aesthetically inferior? This definition fails to accurately assess how I evaluate white women in general. Thus, the statement could be seen as racist even if it is not because I am white, and, more importantly, no harm has come to any women that might be affected by my preference to women who are not white women.

    The subordinate definitions, specifically (2a) and (2b) are technically tautologies. Defining racism by saying it is a doctrine or political program based on racism would get me a zero on my sixth grade vocabulary test because it uses that which is to be defined in the definition. Definition (3) fails because there are times that discrimination based on race makes sense. Imagine we are casting for a movie about Martin Luther King. Would it make sense to cast King or Ralph Abernathy with anyone other than a black actor? The answer is no. Individual choices are not made on a single characteristic alone. Are inner city residents who object to gentrification racists if they see gentrification changing the demographic makeup of their community?

    Race may play a role but there are other factors that lead to such objections. Similarly, if an employer must choose between two applicants for a job one is white and one is black and the white applicant is chosen over the black applicant was the black applicant harmed by racial animus toward him or her, or did the white applicant’s mannerisms and behaviors simply relate more closely with the understanding of the employer. We choose our social friends in a similar manner. An entrant to a social circle must fit within the group’s norms and culture. If they do not it is unlikely that they will stay long within that social circle. Does the fear of “acting white” create some form of self-destruction among non-whites in predominantly white environments? In short, do some non-whites plant the seeds of their own destruction in an attempt to keep it real or stay authentic?

    We assume racism is based on the idea that one feels superior over another. Then why is it that the person who seeks to feel superior acts in a manner designed to communicate that sense of superiority to others? Does a wealthy man flash a wad of bills to demonstrate he is wealthy?

    To define racism we must look at the WHY and not the WHAT. Why do we say that people who are racist are feeling superior to those they look down upon? In fact, they may feel just the opposite. Envy plays a critical role in demographic animus. Why do we condemn the wealthy and question their motives for becoming rich if not for envy. There was no big pile of money that they get to pilfer before we got the chance. Billionaires got to be billionaires because the created something we wanted and we happily gave our money to them for the thing they created.

    If we define racism by “why” one behaves with racial animus toward another we might be able to move beyond hurling charges of racism and not finding racism in every utterance or act by another. We may have to ask ourselves why I am behaving this way toward that other person.

    People who wish to instill a sense of inferiority in others do so only to gain or maintain a social, economic or political advantage over the rival. I believe this is the “why” people behave with racial animus toward others. Other than a sense of self satisfaction, or part of an orchestrated political strategy, I cannot come up with any other rationale for the behavior. It stands to reason that if you feel it necessary to imbue inferiority upon another race, you do it because you do not believe you are measuring up against them in some fashion. In my estimation, racism is not a belief in one’s actual superiority it is the belief that another of a different race may actually be superior. The effect on the ego is profound and it leads to engaging in behaviors that seek to marginalize, diminish, or call into question the inherent value of another. We see this manifest itself in the world of sales when an inadequate sales rep cannot articulate his/her own value proposition and instead simply knocks the competition. Marketing research draws a clear link to fear of loss being a more powerful motivator than probable benefits accrued. The perception of losing status drives those to seek shortcuts and scapegoats.

    If we begin to embrace the idea that racism is the manifestation of a desire to diminish, marginalize, or devalue another for the purpose of gaining and or maintaining a social, political, or economic advantage over persons of other races because the racist feels unable to compete legitimately on a level field we might be able to begin to have that conversation about competing racial issues without the conversation devolving into a shouting match. Thus, if we use my definition of racism it becomes necessary for the accuser to objectively demonstrate how a person, or statement made, attempts to gain a social, political, or economic advantage over the another population demographic. The charge of racism cannot be allowed to be politically weaponized because doing so is itself an act of racism.

    With all the discussion about diversity and how wonderful it is, why is it that we do not make it a habit to associate with people not like us; and, not like us does not mean not my color or race? You don’t see a group of older teens wanting to socialize with middle schoolers. I do not see feminist groups engaging in outreach to men’s rights organizations, or vice versa, to develop constructive solutions to what have been intractable problems. I choose not to associate with people whose recreational activities focus on consuming alcohol or drugs. The fact is we choose our social groups based on similarities and not diversity of experience and interests. This does not make us racists, sexists, xenophobes or any of the other terms designed to marginalize one’s opposition. It simply makes us human beings.

    I am interested in other people’s take on this subject.

    • Chris, I think the largest part of the problem these days with “racism” is that it has been broadened to mean whatever the speaker or writer wants it to mean. It’s become a way to exert power over an opponent, usually to discredit and silence them. “Racist/racism” no longer HAS a meaning. Your thorough analysis assumes the word still has a defined meaning. It does not. It is simply a squib randomly hurled by lefties whenever at at whomever they deem appropriate. As is the case, by the way, with “sexist” or “capitalist” or even “white supremasist.”

      • Ob
        I agree which is why I profferred a definition that does not speculate as to motivation.

        Claims that someone is a racist should be required to show how the behavior in question seeks to obtain a preferential advantage over a given racial group.

    • tl;dr

      ::: sigh :::

      Chris, I think the largest part of the problem these days with “racism” is that it has been broadened to mean whatever the speaker or writer wants it to mean. It’s become a way to exert power over an opponent, usually to discredit and silence them. “Racist/racism” no longer HAS a meaning. Your thorough analysis assumes the word still has a defined meaning. It does not. It is simply a squib randomly hurled by lefties whenever at at whomever they deem appropriate. As is the case, by the way, with “sexist” or “capitalist” or even “white supremacist.”

      I have been reading about the old Anglo-Saxon cultures and their ways. My brother-in-law got a pretty rare set of books by Vilhelm Grönbech (a Danish) called The Culture of the Teutons. Not very far into it but right now he is talking about frith. As I analyze the examples of it, so to understand what it is and how it functioned, it is an ethic closely ties to kinship and family. It means peace or perhaps ‘concord’ but frith is really the basis of the possibility of friendship. Kind of like ‘sacred relationship’ It would not ever have to be thought-through or defended. It was simply established, understood. Therefore frith and friendship (friend: fraendi, or froend) are necessary components of a sort of solidarity that endures through life. The strongest sort of bond I guess. But it is a feeling (I guess this is the closest word since it is not an idea or a concept) that could only exist between kinsmans.

      I thought that perhaps the best way to illustrate what frith is, is to describe what happens to a man (and woman!) when he violates it: Macbeth. His encounter on the Heath is an encounter with deviant forces that prod him toward his innate ambition, and to get there he must murder a kinsman. I’d suggest that this might show Shakespeare’s inner understanding of the concept of frith that, when violated, results in the absolute ruin of Macbeth and Lady Macbeth. Their actions literally upsetted the entire metaphysical order!

      There is a certain amount of debate about who first coined the word racist and for what reason. Certainly in America (according to Google searches and the Oxford definition) it was used by ‘progressive’ sorts to define what happens when you deliberately keep the races separate. But not to be racist therefore meant, for one example, to open schools for American Indians, to cut their hair, wear proper clothes, stop speaking their own languages and just talk English. That was to be non-racist.

      Those who read what I write — few and far between as the case may be 🙂 — will know that I have no issue at all defining myself as racialist. It is simply a given, in my view, that the races should not blend and certainly should not be forced to blend. I would say that it should be obvious (to those who have ‘eyes in their head’) that the Maoist Semi-Totalitarian Social Engineering Program that America has become, but was not originally by any means, uses the term ‘racist’ as one powerful armament of guilt and condemnation for anyone who still has, shall we say, psychic residues of frith.

      It is also true — to approach the problem from another side — that the Christian Ethic attempts to extend frith to all humanity, and imagines, like in some edition of The Watchtower, all people should have innate solidarity on the basis of spiritual affiliation. Certainly our ethics have changed in regard to this question. We are in fact forced by another convention that seems to operate subliminally to see our own distaste for ‘the other’ in the worst light and to judge ourself should we have some racist or racialist feeling. But my view is that all this needs to be revisited and clarified.

      The term racist and racism is not without meaning (though I get what OB says), but is overall a sort of social engineering tool.

      Interesting (if you are mad I guess or ‘crazy as a hoot owl’) that there are ‘kinnist’ Christians that are redefining frith as a way to increase social solidarity between themselves and those they feel related with.


      It is very important that they stop resisting what the engineers have designed for us!

      • Thank you for your response. The kinship reference suggests how social orders connect and how “others” are excluded from groups because of this lack of sense of frith. Interesting take on this.

        I posited a new definition for racism because the current usage seems to be only attributable to majority populations with minorities as victims of the majority. But, if we look at South Africa where the minority maintained political, economic and social supremacy for decades the SA experience demonstrates that a majority population is unnecessary to dominate. Dominance in numbers makes it easier as we can see in the same environment in which the former ruling class is often literally running for their lives.

        If we reserve the term racist for those we can objectively demonstrate are pushing policies that seek to gain an economic, political or social advantage over another race the accusation becomes less speculative because we cannot simply assume motivation and the accusation can be attributed to anyone regardless of their race.

    • Thus, if we use my definition of racism it becomes necessary for the accuser to objectively demonstrate how a person, or statement made, attempts to gain a social, political, or economic advantage over the another population demographic. The charge of racism cannot be allowed to be politically weaponized because doing so is itself an act of racism.

      This describes the problem with what you propose. For “we” to define racism as an attempt to establish a superior position over another because of his race would require everyone to embrace the idea.

      But why would the Left do that? The current definition is working fine for them, as it supplies them with a powerful weapon to influence public policy. In fact, its subjective nature makes it far more effective than it would be as a narrowly-defined term.

      I can only imagine that you presume most people of good faith would be willing to embrace reason, but I know that you know that’s the furthest thing from the truth. People have been encouraged to embrace things that are emotional, not rational in nature these days, and few things stir the emotions more than accusations of racial animus and white supremacy.

      So my somewhat long-winded point is that the Left would find anything that hampers their ability to demonize their opponents unworthy of consideration, especially when founded on a cognitive process they dislike, and only embrace when it augers in their favor.

      The fact is we choose our social groups based on similarities and not diversity of experience and interests. This does not make us racists, sexists, xenophobes or any of the other terms designed to marginalize one’s opposition. It simply makes us human beings.

      Again, modern reality is all about weaponizing human nature, not accurately defining its parameters as pertains to our society. I sympathize with your desire, but in the real world as it exists today, it has no chance of success. Too many people are invested in the usefulness of “racism” as a political and social weapon, and it is a very powerful one that, when applied unethically, can be used to even greater effect.

      • Thanks for the response Glenn, great comment, but why do we allow the left to define the rules of engagement? We should demand from those that charge racism to objectively prove it or shut up. Why should we simply accept the idea that those that seek victimhood will be the ones to define what it means to be a victim.

        • Thanks for the response Glenn, great comment, but why do we allow the left to define the rules of engagement? We should demand from those that charge racism to objectively prove it or shut up. Why should we simply accept the idea that those that seek victimhood will be the ones to define what it means to be a victim.

          Please excuse my ‘interposition’ since the question was not addressed to me.

          One possible answer is that the Progressive Left has, shall we say, taken over the definition of America. The American Civil War, at least in certain senses, was the defeat of an older version of America and the beginning of the construction of a New America. People do not realize that Marx wrote commentaries on the ACW and he was being read, both in the North and South. Meaning of course that American Progressivism has roots in this New America.

          Please allow me to make rather inflammatory statements that are part of my polemical style: (!) The ‘you’ I use is a rhetorical usage.

          You and no one here on this Blog can offer a counter-argument or a counter-proposal to the basic definitions that can be found as the structure on which the New America has been built. You do not seem to like what the outcome has become, but you also do not seem to understand the issue of causation.

          You seem to have a kind of nostalgia for something like The Reagan Era when, in your view, things marched along reasonably well. You desire a return to a status quo ante. But The New America with its New Demographic (‘demography is destiny’ say the Nazi lunatics from their underground fortress in Hell) is only carrying forward the radical project of New Americanism.

          True, it seems unjust that as this is carried out that Whites and whiteness are set out as needing to be eliminated, and I would agree that this offends the sensibilities of many, but there is a direct causal link to things set in motion in the past, and their fruition in the present.

          The Left-progressives define America. They have wedded themselves to it. They are getting more and more power to insist on that definition, and they must — by necessity — go that much further in breaking the relationship with the Olde America that was ground under 150 years ago. Saying this is not nostalgia for a slave culture. It is only to illustrate that historical processes are culminating in the present that we witness.

          I think I understand what ‘you’ want: you want everything and everyone to calm down and to stop being so ideologically driven. To stop thinking in those radical terms. To stop feeling that the old order must be (even more) overturned. So that you and everyone else, no matter who they are and where they come from, can just walk around ‘normally’ without all these political-ideological impositions.

          • I have no problem with moving toward a more just society. The definition of racism I proffered was ecumenical by design.

            No I am not being nostalgic when I asked why conservatives let the left define the terms of engagement. I asked why they simply surrendered without debate. It is somwhat unfair to say that “I” want to return to some ideal past when one fights against a pendulum that has swung far beyond its equilibrium. Moving back to a real center is not feeling a need to return to the old south.

            Your last paragraph is more closely representative of my perspective.

            • If I try to repeat or encapsulate your or someone’s position it is only because I want to understand it. I am glad that with the last paragraph I got it somewhat right!

              I asked why they simply surrendered without debate.

              Well, you could look into the issue of the postwar consolidation of the American Conservative movement through the intellectual agency of William Buckley. In ‘my’ circles they talk about his CIA connections. This indicates the ‘social engineering’ aspect of things. (See E Michael Jones)

              This fits if you accept a Postwar society constructed by a ‘management class’ and by those designing a world economic system, which they most certainly were.

              There were said to be ‘purges’ from out of the Conservative camp in favor of what is now called a ‘centrist’ position, and in my view this ‘centrist’ position is more or less a species of American Progressivism.

              I have no problem with moving toward a more just society.

              Of course not. And that can only mean: receiving the multitudes from afar as a continuation of present policies because you cannot define a sound reason not to (that is, you could never say I only want Whites from Europe)(that’s my ‘rhetorical you’ I must say again); and the further modification and transformation of America into a Multicultural Maoist Totalitarianism (then, you can invade other lands and help them establish the same, it will be gLoRiUs!; and the further deviation from its roots that can only be held to by the original demographic. These are — according to people who think like me and other satanists and evil-doors — the inevitable results of the Postwar construct.

              The only way to confront or to change any of that would be to be able to define an alternative. And that is a question also of justice, except it is seen as an act of injustice in our present.

              Am I getting even weirder than normal these days? 🙂

            • In the book on Teutons ways I mentioned, I got through the section on ‘frith’ and am now on that about ‘honor’. In the case of frith and now of honor I am working with the idea that in general, in the ridiculous, feminized West, the cowardly West, among people ideologically beaten down to the point that they cannot defend their interests because they cannot conceive of what those must be and have lost the thread, the entire direction of things is in descent.

              Since they have no tangible interests they can defend, they give over the direction of things to managers, and then sink down into a victimhood-without-honor. I guess they do this because, at some level, they associate their powerlessness with a proper ethical position? But it is not. They cede ground and surrender everything.

              At the very least, those on ‘our side’, though uncertainly, are trying to define what ‘recovery’ would be, what self-empowerment is, and to develop an active plan of some sort in order to confront . . . the Maoist Progressive Totalitarians who define and rule in the present.

              Perhaps I am wrong but it seems to me that in small ways, maybe it is just a beginning, the tide begins to turn. But at the same time The Enemy turns up the rhetorical motors to “11” in their attempts to cower people into submission.

              … more when I know more …


        • Thanks for the response Glenn, great comment, but why do we allow the left to define the rules of engagement? We should demand from those that charge racism to objectively prove it or shut up.

          Do you think that would work? I must say, I’m skeptical.

          Look, the Left defines racism because the center is unwilling to hold them to reason, even if the right may (and I’m not sure they) be willing to do so.

          The center falls willingly for the emotionalism of the Left, and every appeal to racism they make is an emotionally fraught argument. If over half the country rejects reason as the cognitive response, how can it ever be expected to apply reason as the appropriate process?

          Why should we simply accept the idea that those that seek victimhood will be the ones to define what it means to be a victim.

          Whether “we” accept it or not is irrelevant. If the country as a whole won’t accept it, is it rational to think that a minority can force the left to surrender a weapon that gives them tremendous social power, or that they’ll volunteer to do so for the greater good? You can’t convince people who refuse to apply logic, that’s a nonsequitur. You can try to manipulate them with emotion, but that’s all.

          But dare to dream, Chris. 🙂

            • Well, I don’t really think winning is possible. I don’t mean to suggest we shouldn’t object, and your objection is very well taken.

              I just mean that we shouldn’t expect to succeed. The soil is infertile to the point of radioactivity.

          • I don’t know, Glenn. Continuing the story about a beer buddy who is both anti-Semitic, and a Holocaust Denier, several other beer buddies have asked me to get them some printed word countering his thoughts on both counts. They want to actively confront him about his non-factual beliefs. I may be the go-to guy for this because I have a computer and a printer and they have cell phones. And again, he may choose to never speak to me again or never come to the bar again, but, frankly, I count it as no great loss.

    • The only useful definition that I can see for racism is:

      The attribution of any moral quality or decision making ethos to a person based purely on their genetic make up.

      All other ways the term “racism” is used leads one to conclude that the user of the term doesn’t have any consistent meaning and merely rely on on the term as a conversation ending short cut.

  3. Here’s a random topic: Mrs. OB has instructed me to spend less (none?) time reading and commenting at EA and otherwise reading news and opinion pieces. She says it’s not good for my health. This relates to Jack’s discussion of “peer pressure.” I’ve always felt it’s important to stand up against peer pressure but I’m wondering whether at some point in life (I’m 67), it’s simply pointless. We live in a resort/retirement community. Surprisingly, a lot of people here our age are lefties. The prior generation is dying off. Mrs. OB says I should just keep my mouth shut or act as if I agree with them so we can get along. She has even suggested that many of the “lefties” are probably just mouthing platitudes to not stand out and just get along themselves! (I’ve wondered about this phenomenon as well and question the validity of political polling these days given a significant demographic’s desire not to be known as not being violently anti-conservative, anti-Trump, etc.) Does my being concerned about the future of the country do any good or does it just get me needlessly wound up (Mrs. OB’s point- although I don’t worry about any of this stuff adversely affecting my health). But, if a guy is conservative in the forest, does it really matter? I’m beginning to think not. Anyone? Beuhler?

    Cheers to all the EA Denizens.

    • OB I recently did a 28 day news/internet fast. I don’t do social media (EA is my social media) but definitely noticed a sense of wasted time in my life lately. This fast was spurred by Cal Newport’s new book Digital Minimalism.

      The first week was rough. I missed knowing what was going on & found my body wanting to reach for my phone & having to stop myself. Then suddenly I didn’t want to know. Major news items came & went & I was blissfully unaware of them. I had more time for things like studying books I had put off (like a really interesting one about the Nazi’s and their interest in Buddhism, mysticism, and the occult). I read huge chunks of the Bible. My writing projects even seemed more inspired.

      Since going off the fast I’ve been “informed” again & all I want is to go back to the nest of tranquility I had those 28 days. I miss standing with coffee & looking out the window for several minutes. I miss not having an opinion about whatever the grievance du jour is. It seems like in spite of how great this blog & my other sources of news are, I just feel a sense of emptiness after reading them now. Something in me says “none of this shit really matters.”

      It does, and then it doesn’t.

      It’s my wife’s 50th birthday today. She’s on the phone talking to her grandma & I’m wasting time commenting. Maybe it’s time to go look out the window.

      • Mrs. Q, I may be getting way too personal, here, but I hope not. I lost my wife back in September of 2017. We used to watch the News religiously every night. She was a particular fan of Bill O’Reilly until we found out what a slime-ball he was. We had both been married twice before, but we were each the great loves of our lives. My advice…go to the window and when she gets off of the phone, call your wife over, put your arm around her, tell her you love her and wish her a happy birthday. Hang on to her with all you’ve got, and forget your phone, social media and the news. If anything really important happens, you’ll hear about it. She is the most important thing in your life right now.

      • “It does and then it doesn’t” matter. A-fucking-MEN. I haven’t gone cold turkey but my give-a-shitter is in the shop and up on blocks. So I’ve got that goin’ for me. Discretion is the better part of valor. Moderation is the key. I’m gong to play nine holes of golf tomorrow with a neighbor (a reliably lucid conservative guy our age). Real, honest to God golf on a golf course. Nothing digital. Should be fun. And I’m keeping Mrs. OB happier than a pig in you know what doing endless honey-dos.

    • OB, I have a beer buddy (yes, at 73, I still go to a local bar, but I try to avoid barfights) who is as anti-Semitic as they come. He is also a Holocaust denier, but every time he goes into one of his rants, I produce a nice, thick stack of paper from, usually, Wikipedia showing he is wrong. I doubt seriously that I am changing his mind, but I am doing two things; I am embarrassing him publicly, at the bar, showing that he is factually wrong and I am proving to the people at the bar that he should not be listened to or argued with. Yes, it is stressful but my belief is that his strident and totally non-factual beliefs MUST be confronted, lest they spread. I do not expect him to ever become my best friend, and, I suspect that he will eventually stop coming to the bar, but that’s OK too.

      • d_d, I salute you, as I do Jack and his wonderful, admirable Dad. I need to start going to bars. Oh, wait, I’m going to play some golf again tomorrow for the first time in almost twenty years. An outdoor bar. Or as I heard it once referred to, “pasture pool.” But I’ll chat with my neighbor as we bunt it around.

        Growing up in a largely Irish Catholic family, dinner conversation was intent and we grew up thinking people said what they meant and meant what they said. But now a days, Mrs. OB may be right that I’m a bit of a lone ranger. I shouldn’t be playing in traffic. I think I’ll step back to the curb for a while and observe.

    • Hmm; ideological and digital purgatory?

      The opposite of a cleanse; you’re preventing shit from getting in their in the first place?

      I do NO social media, and post comments at 3 sites regularly. I still have a flip phone; heck, I believe I could give dragin_dragon a run in the luddite Dinosaur milieu.

      As far as keeping my yap shut, I’m adrift in a Sea of Lefties, so I pick my battles while infrequently seeking solace in the form of Letters-To-The-Editor.

      My lovely and long-suffering wife (a career Lefty) occasionally gets her bloomers in a bunch when the local dailies decide to print some of my blasphemy, like this.

        • Zo, Herr Von Gotchberg, ist Schlect un nom de guerre or ist you zuffering from split personality dizorder, jah?

          Living in Madison and being reasonable, do you know Ann Althouse and her husband personally?

          Is it “Skell-ECKT?” or “Shlect?” German? A little Dutch? Walloon? Alsatian?

          Great letters to the editor. They must love you at the paper, doing your work for them as you are, for free. What’s not to like. Have some more cheese curds on me.

  4. I’d like to throw this one out: regarding the college admissions scandal.

    Assumption – students who’s parents cheated to get them into said college will be removed from that college.


    1. do the classes already taken by the students who’s parents “cheated” to get them in to that college count?

    2. If that student goes to another college, will the classes taken at previous one be accepted?

    3. Do those students receive privacy, or can the media post their names as they did their parents?

    • Great questions, but I think the answer is if they did the course work and got the grade, it should stay on their record. Whether they should be allowed to stay enrolled is another question given the elaborate fraud in which they were involved or from which they benefited. I think so long as they weren’t knowingly involved in the fraud, they should be allowed to transfer to another school. A nice JC or a state uni. Wherever they should have been able to matriculate in the first place.

        • Michael (if I may call you Michael), since many of the service academy slots are filled via Congressional appointment, one must give some credence to the idea that sizable campaign contributions might be part of the equation. The ethical issue however, should be assigned to the member of Congress,rather than the school itself.

  5. At lunch today, the man ahead of me in line ordered a tuna sub with pepperoni and mozzarella cheese, toasted. Is it ethical for a sandwich shop to sell you a combination that, while perhaps technically edible, is utterly disgusting?

    • I guess so, as long as the sandwich maker has no pride in his work product and is willing to put anything at all that doesn’t violate the health code between two slices of bread.

      That combination gave the classic tuna melt a bad name all by itself. Maybe it should violate the health code.

    • I think the sandwich shop guy thought it was a joke at first. But the customer insisted that he wanted “something different”, and was serious about the order. I was too stunned to ask if he had tried this combination before, or if this was a radical flavor experiment. If it was the latter, I fear he may no longer be with us to provide the results of his taste test, having been killed by his own tongue in self-defense.

  6. In a hilarious interview with Jimmy Fallon, Aidy Bryant admit to sexual harassment of her subordinates:

    Say what you want about the ever-oscillating quality of venerable comedy cruise liner Saturday Night Live, there’s nobody in the current cast more welcome and delightful than Aidy Bryant.

    But Bryant’s Annie Easton isn’t daunted, and neither is Bryant, whose had to settle into her role as star and producer on Shrill with a few missteps. You know, like thinking that taking the cast of the Portland, Oregon-set show to one of the city’s many fine stripping establishments was a great team-building exercise. Noting the sight of “boobs” and “gines” everywhere, Bryant told Fallon about coming to the realization that, “I’m their boss . . . I’m a bad boss.” Perhaps, but Aidy’s still a boss.


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