Open Forum, Or “I Guess I Picked The Wrong Time To Start Driving All Over Virginia!”

Today’s legal ethics smackdown in Richmond went swimmingly, but I only got home in time to change clothes and head off to the site of tomorrow’s repeat performance. I actually started a post about the unfolding New York Times smear fiasco (and the astounding number of pundits and pols who are trying to spin it away from the only possible and fair conclusion), but I just couldn’t get it done.

I’ll be back in the blog saddle til late tomorrow. Meanwhile, I am once again turning the keys over to you, dear readers. You haven’t let Ethics Alarms, or me, or ethics, down yet.

Go to it.

93 thoughts on “Open Forum, Or “I Guess I Picked The Wrong Time To Start Driving All Over Virginia!”

  1. Okay, this may be a bit of a stretch, but trying to fill something in here:

    Can journalism be a profession?

    My profession, law, has a set of ethical rules. It is a club, and it is self-regulating. Is it self-regulating? Yeah. My state gets about 1000 complaints per year, and about 10 percent each year get disciplined. Every year, you get a handful of disbarments. Not overbearing but I know a lawyer who got a 60-day suspension for a “non-legal” infraction and basically threw in the towel. I can empathize. It is like being accused of a crime; it can be hard to deal with. And, you are held to standards.

    The press? You can’t be de-pressed? Dis-presses? Unimpressed?

    In a free society, with a free press, can you have a profession where there is no way to regulate its participants.

    A shorter way to ask the question: can the press be a true profession if Dan Rather can’t be barred from the profession?

    Similar question for teaching. The wrinkle with teaching: can a profession governed by labor unions really enforce ethical standards and discipline?

    -Jut

    • Engineering can be an example. While licensing is handled by states, there are professional societies that encourage high standards and exercise a degree of self-regulation. The American Society of Civil Engineers, for example, has an ethics committee that can investigate complaints that run afoul of the engineering code of ethics, but not necessarily state sanctionable regulations. It can hear cases involving professional conduction, unfair marketing, calamity of another engineer, etc.

      The catch, of course, is that the strictest possible remedy is expulsion from the society.

      Many states have similar professional organizations for other fields. In law, the Connecticut Bar Association is such a private organization (admission and suspension from the bar is done by the a state agency with an obscure name). Medicine has “Board Certification”. Accounting and actuarial sciences have many levels of private certification. Other than perhaps the medical boards few are household names.

      Journalism as a profession suffers from the latter. There are ethics organizations, and nobody knows of them. The closest to a household name is the dubious Pulitizer Prize organization. Journalism is somewhat unique among professions in that it is constitutionally protected. Only clergy enjoy similar privilege. As an aside,maybe lobbyists – I find proposals for lifetime bans of former congressman from lobbying to be constitutionally dubious, given the right to freely assemble AND the independent right to petition for redress of grievances.

      Journalism cannot be regulated by the state, nor should it, as a core purpose is to independently monitor the state. Yet there is also no reliable media watchdog to independently monitor the journalist. It is precisely in these circumstances, where outside regulation is impossible, that each member of the profession must hold himself accountable.

      Professionals deal in matters too complicated for the average person to comprehend. It is a position of trust. The public blindly trusts the bridge will not collapse below them; most lack the skills to see the earliest signs of structural distress. The public all but blindly trust TaxACT and H&R Block to do their taxes correctly, as the Byzantine tax code cause all ye to abandon hope. Criminal defendants all but blindly trust their lawyers to get the best possible resolution to their cases, because 1000 years of case law is not something the average Joe has studied.

      Journalism, by all appearances, is such a specialized field. Most people will not have the resources to independently investigate each incident site, each legislative meeting, each potential witness to a fraud, etc. Journalists perform a service of trust for the public.

      It is not the formal oversight that makes a profession, but the nature of duties fulfilled. Journalism is failing those duties, and not holding itself accountable. Individuals are rationalizing each other’s missteps and misconduct, rather than holding each other to higher standards. The mechanisms exist for the professional journalism to do their duties.

      The professionals are failing their duties. But the professional duties do exist.

      • Engineering is a bit of an odd example though. Only 11% of engineers get a license. Licensure is mandatory if you directly offer services to the public. If you’re an employee and don’t do certain public safety activities, you don’t have to get a license.
        Ironically the highest paid and most talented engineers don’t. You don’t need a license to design Intel processors, iPhones, Tesla roadsters or SpaceX rockets. Those engineers never bother.
        The licensure boards end up being run by engineers who could never even grasp what the Silicon Valley engineers do and live in a very different world.
        To the lay public “licensed engineer” sounds like the most knowledgeable guy, but is usually the opposite.

    • Journalism has a code of ethics, too, but there is no enforcement mechanism fir breaches of the rules. What happens when a journalist violates the rules? Termination and a bashing of reputation and that’s about it. Lawyers get sanctioned and may lose their licenses.

      jvn

      • A few terms come to mind: ink stained wretches? Yellow journalism? William Randolph Hearst? Historically, news outlets have famously whored themselves. I’d say it’s only been in the ‘fifties and sixties that Edward R. Murrow et al. gave newspeople an ephemeral veneer of objectivity. The veneer was ripped off during the Vietnam War and Watergate. Careers were made as were fortunes. It’s been downhill ever since. We are simply seeing a fullblown reversion to yellow journalism practiced by ink stained wretches for corporate ownership.

        • If I may be permitted to say, what you have written here is a deeply critical and very relevant statement of condemnation. It also implies the necessity of remediation. And I know that your orientation is more conservative and traditional than it is left-leaning (obviously). It has always seemed to me that this sort of critique only ever came from the former American Left. Now of course I do not have any clear sense of what the so-called Progressive Left advocates for, except for increasing sexual license. They are not ‘anti-war’ and they are not ‘pro-labor’. Maybe what they have become is best understood by seeing their most extreme example: a black-dressed hooded and masked thug beating ‘fascists’ with pipes?

          Here you have stated that there is such a thing as a corrupt journalist establishment, and that these people ‘whore themselves’ to monied interests. This of course implies monied interests that operate within our culture non-ethically and non-morally: powerful, wealthy interests who operate against the public good; who use their power to steer the policies of the nation toward destructive ends; who abuse their influence and power and yet ‘hold their heads up’ as if they are good, productive and decent people.

          Your comment — which is atypical to this blog and to those who, largely, are strict apologists for American righteousness that does not have to answer to any criticisms and refuses to — fits in with my sense that American Conservativism must recover its critical capacity. If it does not the nation not only may be lost but will be lost. Does this not indicate, beyond any doubt, a very serious situation? And if that is true Who is spelling out, in clear and direct terms? Where is the ‘conservative discourse’ that is doing more than just complaining, shrilly, about what the terrifying Lefties are doing? My view is that the Conservatives channel hatred and contempt toward the likes of ‘Noam Chomsky’ (a symbol of Left-criticism) yet they are ‘accomplices’ to the corruption which you have outlined here, fairly and directly.

          If the veneer was ripped in the Vietnam Era (Watergate being somewhat different if I understand its implications correctly), what is it that was wrong about Vietnam? That was counter-national and that functioned against the Republic, that did harm (which is said not to have healed fully)? Well, the answer is pretty simple, and you stated it but which I will turn into a question: Do you refer to intellectual whores who sell their skills in persuasion to monied and industrial interests and wage war resulting in millions of deaths for which the US as the instigating entity does not have to answer for? Is that what you mean? Is that what you are saying? Is that ‘allowable’? Can one say such things and still be ‘conservative’. You know I have asked this same question in many different forms for over 5 years . . . and I have never gotten a straight answer.

          Edward Murray quotes:

          We must not confuse dissent with disloyalty. When the loyal opposition dies, I think the soul of America dies with it.

          No one can terrorize a whole nation, unless we are all his accomplices.

          Anyone who isn’t confused really doesn’t understand the situation.

          We are simply seeing a full-blown reversion to yellow journalism practiced by ink stained wretches for corporate ownership.

          Hold on. From the look of things — if one really allowed a full and critical position — one’s critiques and one’s seeing would have to extend back farther in time. In The Dispossessed Majority by Wilmot Robertson he brings out a critique of the ways that America got involved in both WW l and WW ll. And he talks about (he does so from a non-left position) the destructive results of the concentration of power this resulted in. I have brought out that my impression is that the US turned a significant corner during the Spanish-American War and the Philippine and Cuban adventures (with implications as to the sort of policies the US had toward the Caribbean and Central and South America: quite reprehensible in many ways). But my critiques come from a conservative perspective: these operated against the values of the Republic and were anti-Constitutional.

          The backdrop to the true resurrection of Conservative thinking in America today — I suggest — is to be found among those who are most vilified by The System in our present. I mention the names of these intellectuals often. Their ideas and their writings are largely completely forbidden. The entire structure is established to condemn their thinking. And it is that structure which has us (all) incorporated to one degree or another.

            • I’m not an intellectual and certainly not a scholar. I make my own observations and jot them down. I don’t catalogue the thinking of others or search for someone’s construct that explains everything. Probably a goofy American trait. I’m a cynic insofar as I firmly believe people act mostly in their own interest. Journalists write stories they think their readers will pay to read and their employers will pay them to write. They are not nonle purveyors of truth, they’re just trying to pay the rent and make it until the next pay day.

    • I think it’s already been said, but the reason that a regulatory body wouldn’t be easy to institute is because of the free speech ramifications; efforts to restrict of censure journalists would almost certainly be unconstitutional.

      But that leaves us with the reality that journalism, despite being so very necessary, if effectively unchecked. Doctors, Lawyers, CPA accountants, independent engineers, and New York hair-braiders all have more oversight than journalists do. Additionally, because journalists aren’t regulated, nothing really keeps anyone from hooking a microphone and a web cam up to their bedroom computer, commenting on the news, and calling themselves, legitimately, journalists.

      Which is why despite the necessary function of good journalism, I’ve never understood the sacred-cow worship of “freedom of the press” over and above the freedom of speech that is broadly defined in the first amendment. By what logic should a person with an iPhone 10 on record and a press pass have more or less rights or protections to speak than another person with an iPhone 10 on record sans said press pass? If “the press” can not be defined in any meaningful way, then are we not all the press merely by saying so? Is Jack not “the press” for writing this blog? I mean, at the risk of blowing smoke up his ass, I’m sure that he’s both written more articles, and more meaningful articles, than anyone one might hit by throwing a rock into your average newspaper cubicle farm.

      So why do we care? The media writ large collapse into vapored vibration, manically clutching their pearls at the mere inference that someone might be speaking critically of a news organization that has no apparent standards and routinely purveys loose facilities of bias coated truth as “Fake News”. And why should we care? The dumber Cuomo brother (Fredo) said that calling CNN “Fake News” was like calling them the n-word. What the hell are we supposed to do with that? How seriously are we supposed to take that? Who the literal hell cares what these moral molehills think, noses bleeding from the heights of their ivory towers, perpetually high on their own flatulence? Treat them exactly as you would any other person or group of people that regularly debase themselves spectacularly and publicly: mock them and take them less seriously.

      • Excellent points, HT.

        You absolutely correct that “press” is not defined in law or the Constitution. Think of the lone pamphleteer. That person’s right to publish his/her grievances is identical to the Washington Post, CNN, Fox News, and The Communist Worker. The issue with the “free press” is to encourage free flow of information. Libel (defamation and slander) laws protect the press, especially in cases where the libelee is a public figure under New York Times v. Sullivan, where a higher standard of actual malice is required to hold the press liable for libel. The other issue is: the remedy for awful speech is not restrictions on speech but on encouraging more speech.

        jvb

  2. Perhaps this is not an ethics issue, but I was horrified to learn that there are plans to remake “The Princess Bride.” Why?! Leave the original alone. You can only hurt the heritage if the original.

    jvb

    • Perhaps remaking The Princess Bride is an ethical issue: Many successful films are remade without any real “need” to do so other than to turn the film into a cash-cow franchise. I’m willing to concede that there are many remakes and sequels that do have something new and interesting to offer, such as films that illustrate how society has changed since the original (The recent Halloween reboot comes to mind), how the same situation could be approached differently (such as Alien/Aliens), or even just because the film would look spectacular with today’s vastly improved visual effects.

      Despite this, many films offer little that is new or interesting, counting on nostalgia or the public’s low standards to guarantee they make their investors’ money back. The studios do have an obligation to their stockholders to make as much of a profit as possible, but by choosing to produce such safe, uninspired fare, they eliminate the possibility of other, more original films being made.

      • even just because the film would look spectacular with today’s vastly improved visual effects…

        Careful. They might misconstrue this as permission to remake ‘Dune.’ 🤣

        Some things do not convert well to visual media for most people, except for those already cult members. If you do not know what a ‘Kwisatz Haderach’ or a ‘Guild Navigator’ is, you likely should miss the movie, however good the CGI.

    • Johnburger2013,

      I disagree. It is dumb to re-make certain films, but not sure about unethical.

      I think of some re-makes: Red Dawn, Total Recall, Psycho, Planet of the Apes. None of them lived up to the original, but the re-make did not diminish the original.

      Are there exceptions? Probably. The computer-animated Jungle Book, maybe. Mel Gibson’s Hamlet was a much better rendition than Bob and Doug’s Strange Brew.

      The Princess Bride will not likely be improved by being re-made.

      -Jut

      • James and Jut make excellent and equally persuasive points. Perhaps it is that a certain movie or performance is so identified with a role/character that it is tantam8unt to heresy to muck with it. I think of Peter Sellers as Inspector Clouseau. It would take a master performance to equal Sellers. Steve Martin, though excellent, missed the mark by 6 miles.

        jvb

          • Wizard of Oz is an easy one to remake. Well, not remake, but to re-service. The 1939 film is a musical adaptation of published books. So afraid have people been to tarnish the legacy of the musical adaptation that when they’ve tried to interpret the books, they gave a wide berth and shot themselves in the proverbial foot. A serious filmmaker that would try to take on the books and accept that they aren’t making a “musical” would have a lot of fun with this series – and dare I say that what they come up with would be perfect for a 3 season Netflix series.

      • The computer generated anythings will never compare to the golden age animations. They are the very definition of stunts. (Only the released animated version of the Lion King made an impression on me. I refuse to see the others; those who have told me I wasn’t missing anything.)

        I think even Hollywood agrees that the Wizard of Oz is untouchable. It was a technical marvel for its time, and so well executed it stands up today. I’d probably add the Sound of Music in a similar category.

        Gone with the Wind I’ve heard is untouchable today for another reason (I really need to see that one….).

    • First response I have made to a comment in this Open Forum:.
      Remaking classic films is an example of arrogance and greed, and often stupidity. Is there an ethical component? I think so: doing this dilutes the impact of the original, is disrespectful artistically, and exploits cultural ignorance. It’s also lazy, There have been examples of legitimate classics that have been remade into something excellent on it’s own terms (“The Thing” is a good example) and even examples of classics made well enough to sort of justify the effort, like the Coen Brothers remake of “True Grit,” or the remake of “Invasion of the Body Snatchers.” These are exceptions, however. Mostly such films demonstrate the deplorable state of creativity in Hollywood today, and are embarrassments, or at best successful financially despite demonstrating their inferiority to their originals. Without thinking hard, I would list the remakes of Stagecoach, Ben-Hur, The Ten Commandments, Rear Window, Psycho, Day of the Jackal, The Manchurian Candidate, The Poseidon Adventure, Sabrina, The Thomas Crown Affair, High Noon, The Day the Earth Stood Still, The Absent-Minded Professor, and The Magnificent Seven,

      • I thought the remake of ‘The Thomas Crown Affair’ was excellent.

        Mind you, I did not realize it WAS a remake until years after I first saw it in theater. And Pierce Brosnan was Bond… James Bond. And Rene Russo was HOT, and wore that see through top in the dance scene. And the NYPD Detective was the comedian from ‘The Ref.’ And there was really cool tech (like Bond) that I knew did not exist, but wished it did. And the museum robbers were euro cool, and used cool weapons…

        Okay, I am gonna just admit to bias right here: there were so many things that spoke to me at that age and stage of life.

        I learned a bit about art from my research tangential to the film, so we got that goin’ for us…

        • It’s a weird example, because the original, while famous, is boring and dumb. That “longest kiss” was nauseating—I didn’t want to kiss anyone or anything for weeks. And McQueen just isn’t a rich guy. Hated the original, hated the remake less. (Rene was well-past her pull-date in the film too, competing with Dunaway in her prime.)

  3. So is it ethical to open the doors wide to those who seek to flee Hong Kong while simultaneously cracking down on the wave of asylum seekers from the south?

    Part of the immigration policy should be aimed at the ability of those arriving to be a net gain to society instead of a burden. Those 7 million in Hong Kong fit the bill. Highly entrepreneurial, 80% college educated, and a strong disdain for power hungry rights violating governments. What’s not to like?

    • This…. Is…. Interesting.

      I don’t know what the right answer is, but it’s a great case study, because I think it will really drag into the light the fundamental lie of progressives on immigration: That conservative opposition to illegal immigration from Mexico and Central America is based on white supremacy, racism, and not economic or bona fide qualifications.

      I mean, I’ve often lamented that Hispanics weren’t arian white, because while I accepted that there is a contingent of people who just don’t want people that don’t look like them in their country, I assume they’re small, and I’ve always assumed that this was more a cultural/economic position, and the response to it would be largely the same regardless of the melanin levels involved.

      Now, with refugees from Hong Kong, this will demonstrate the same test, but in reverse: Instead of a region full of uneducated, unskilled white people drug in by coyotes as an example, there’s a group of highly educated, highly skilled, patriotic, hard-working, interestingly America-loving, *not white* people looking to enter America. How broken does the narrative get if all of a sudden the “white supremacist racists” start welcoming non-white people into America by the boatload?

      Which for the record, I think you should.

      • I don’t know what the right answer is, but it’s a great case study, because I think it will really drag into the light the fundamental lie of progressives on immigration: That conservative opposition to illegal immigration from Mexico and Central America is based on white supremacy, racism, and not economic or bona fide qualifications.

        It is likely true that you do not know ‘the answer’ nor any answer since, it seems, yo do not operate from sound predicates. You have predicates but they are quirky and strange.

        You have to distinguish which ‘conservatism’ you are speaking about. You have to establish and clarify these categories first. The ‘original conservatives’ were those who founded the nation and at that time said ‘This is for ourselves and our posterity’. Though their anthropological understandings have been and are contested by many — you quite likely, certainly Jack — those who are on *my side* of these cultural battles and debates see them as being substantially right. So, that conservatism would choose to bring into the country — to incorporate into the polity and the nation — people who were substantially similar, and that of course means Whites from Europe.

        All the true-blue ‘American Conservatives’ that think in these terms — traditional, original terms — oppose MesoAmerican immigration (or ‘invasion’ be it legal or illegal) for the very simple reason that those people are somatically, intellectually, culturally, linguistically and even perhaps spiritually different. One could indulge in a hierarchy of valuations and say that the Anglo-Saxon and all their traditions and cultural history is ‘superior’ to that of MesoAmericans, and you could make a very good case in that direction. If one defined a ‘superior thing’ against an ‘inferior thing’ it could be done in strict, tangible, sound reasoning. You could do this quite easily if you chose to, and so could anyone who writes on this blog. You don’t of course because of the pressure and the threat exerted by people who have chosen to condemn others with moral shaming. You must pay attention to moral shaming and you must bow to it. You know this, I know this, as does everyone who writes on this blog.

        The terms ‘supremicism’ and ‘racism’ are non-helpful terms because they are ‘hot’ and part of distorted and distorting social and ideological conflicts. Very simply put: Europe and its achievements, and the people who comprise Europe and all of its structures, are incomparably superior to any achievement or even potential of achievement of any MesoAmerican indigenous society or any person who now exists. Stating this, it is simply obvious. It is incontestable. But of course *you* cannot say such a thing! And you won’t. Why? If you had any social position at all and you did state such a thing they would crush you and destroy you.

        You are constrained certainly in what you think, and beyond any doubt in what you say. This is obvious and it is incontestable.

        Now, if you turn your attention to most of modern American ‘Conservatism’ you first have to use the scare quotes. You have to establish that they are not really conservatives. They have adopted and absorbed the ideological tenets and predicates of Progressive-Leftism. They were caught in the social justice 1960 ‘civil rights’ movement and they have these ideas installed at a cellular level.

        Well, you likely see where I am going here. No part of this have yo really ever thought about, and anyway you are a Canadian Libertarian Ultra-Progressive who is also homosexual. Therefore, within this necessary and determining set of predicates, you reason in as I say odd and ‘quirky’ ways. You are absolutely no help at all to conservatism as I would define it. You are more properly a sort of radical and you serve those goals and objects.

        I mean, I’ve often lamented that Hispanics weren’t arian white, because while I accepted that there is a contingent of people who just don’t want people that don’t look like them in their country, I assume they’re small, and I’ve always assumed that this was more a cultural/economic position, and the response to it would be largely the same regardless of the melanin levels involved.

        I think you mean Aryan. But a better term is Indo-European. If you could avail yourself of a sensible set of predicates, you could consider the term Indo-European and that would shed some light on the rather afllicted term Aryan. But within these categories you are automatically pushed out. They are off-limits for you. It is not — or not alone — that people desire to be around and mate with ‘people who look like them’, though that is certainly a part of it. Certain people share long-standing cultural and social traits which they have ‘worked on’ over generations and even millennia. One can — quite easily — do simple research into the origins of Europeans at a somatic level, and in respect to all their accomplishments, and trace it all back to Indo-Europeanism. Or to put it differently that category has relevance in gaining understanding. But this is, as I say, off limits for you and most — or all — who write on this blog.

        If Hispanics were ‘Aryan’ or Indo-European, they would not be MesoAmericans. MesoAmericans are primarily Indigenous Mestizos. Who those people are, their history, their ‘trajectory’, their purpose and even their ‘value’ in relation to civilizational values and objectives . . . could all be discussed, fairly and directly, by people in possession of sensible predicates.

        Now, with refugees from Hong Kong, this will demonstrate the same test, but in reverse: Instead of a region full of uneducated, unskilled white people drug in by coyotes as an example, there’s a group of highly educated, highly skilled, patriotic, hard-working, interestingly America-loving, *not white* people looking to enter America.

        People from Hong Kong should remain in Hong Kong. ‘For ourselves and our progeny’ meants something completely and totally specific, not something whimsical and that can be altered simply because *you* feel like it in some given moment. It is very true that those people would be sound additions to American European culture, but they are not Europeans.

        Once you establish very basic categories and define them, everything falls pretty easily into place.

        • I really wish you wouldn’t respond to me. I refuse to read the bulk of your comments, most of it is tangential to the conversation I’m having, much of it is mind-numbingly overstated, and hidden in there is exactly the kind of conservatism you apparently think I need to distinguish, apparently.

          Take this nugget, for instance:

          “If Hispanics were ‘Aryan’ or Indo-European, they would not be MesoAmericans. MesoAmericans are primarily Indigenous Mestizos. Who those people are, their history, their ‘trajectory’, their purpose and even their ‘value’ in relation to civilizational values and objectives . . . could all be discussed, fairly and directly, by people in possession of sensible predicates. People from Hong Kong should remain in Hong Kong. ‘For ourselves and our progeny’ meants something completely and totally specific, not something whimsical and that can be altered simply because *you* feel like it in some given moment. It is very true that those people would be sound additions to American European culture, but they are not Europeans.”

          Couldn’t you just have said: “We must secure the existence of our people and a future for white children.”?

          I don’t think I’ve ever had the 14 words spouted unironically at me before, even taking into account you using 112 to say them.

          • I ‘really wish’ all sorts of things too! 🙂

            You don’t get to make the choice as to who responds to what you write.

            Read, don’t read: irrelevant to me. My purpose is to clarify ideas in relation to a tremendous quantity of lies: the stuff we swim in, and the stuff that will kill us.

            • So riddle me this, my fair Mestizo:

              If us white folk should be so concerned about the infectious influence of people of non-white, and in particular Spanish-Native Central American descent, then why should any of us listen to you? I mean, you might think I’m a flaming, libertarian, ultra-progressive Canadian, but I was born and raised on steak, potatoes and Yorkshire pudding. If the cultural identity of America is deeply seeded in anglo-saxon or European culture, and threatened by hispanics, then why should my fabulous British Canadian ass give a damn what your self hating half-Jewish Brazilian ass thinks?

              Or maybe…. Maybe…. Culture is more than skin deep. I know that’s a radical idea to you… But hear me out. What if… and you might want to sit down for this: culture is neither written in stone, or strands of DNA? What if culture is a living, breathing, evolving thing, and people are not predetermined to the culture of their birth at the point of conception? What if…. and if you need a drink of water, I suggest you get it now before continuing, culture is separate and discrete from melanin content, and people could either learn or take great steps at a meaningful integration with American culture, which…. And hold on to your Hitler-Youth socks: Is not, and never was, based on even similar values to much of Europe.

              “God keep our land, glorious and free.
              Oh, Canada, we stand on guard for thee.”

              “Laaaaaand of the freeeeeeeeee,
              and the hooooome of the braaaaave.”

              “GoD sAvE oUr GrAciOuS qUeEn, LoNg LiVe OuR gRaCiOuS qUeEn […]
              SeNd HeR ViCtOrIoUs, HaPpY aNd GlOrIoUs, EvEr To RuLe OvEr Us, GoD sAvE tHe QuEeN.”

                • I…. Have mixed feelings.

                  In Mitigation:

                  I’ve never understood the progressive ability to not be able to differentiate between things that at face value look similar, but is not actually similar. Why is blackface so bad? Because of a history of extremely odious to current sensibilities minstrel shows. Arabs don’t have that same history…. And for a group that often tell me that my privilege means that I can’t feel offense the same way marginalized people do because I didn’t experience the same history… Going after one of their own for something that’s different enough to be different, especially something that happened 18 years ago. Let’s just say I’m not going to get too involved in this one.

                  Also worth noting:

                  I know we don’t have the same constant two-year pageantesque shitshow America makes of it’s elections, but we’re on day 7 of a 40 day national election campaign, and JT was lagging in the polls even before this happened. It’s almost unheard of for a Prime Minister to lose an election only a single term after winning a massive majority, but between lukewarm governance, a good old fashioned Quebec corruption scandal, and his 20 year old propensity for grease paint, he might actually lose this. The timing is suspect. This is one of those “we had this information for weeks/months/years but held on to it for maximum damage” things I find odious.

                  In Favour:

                  This is *hilarious*. Our current conservative leader is a dog-ear. He was supposed to hold the place for a term or two while the conservative party walked in the woods following Steven Harper’s defeat, so he is the most boring, milquetoast candidate *ever* and even he might beat Trudeau this time around.

                  Also, let’s be real, if this happened to literally anyone other than Trudeau, he would be first in line to condemn in the most serious of terms the assorted bigotries that he saw displayed. I don’t think I can think of a politician hoist harder on his own petard in the history of ever, and it’s glorious.

                  In conclusion: I don’t care, but his base does, and I think that’s great.

                • Also in favour:

                  The Liberal Campaign recently tried to make hay from Andrew Scheer’s previous positions on Gay marriage, that is: he spoke against it in 2003. And using that to fearmonger the spectre of Conservatives un-legalising (illegalising? annulling? What is word? Repealing?) gay marriage. This despite Sheer saying he wasn’t interested in that conversation and having been part of a ten year majority government with a stacked senate, where if they *really* were going to do that, they would have. The Liberals can’t even argue this isn’t an issue because of the amount of time that’s past, or that JT’s position has changed, they’ve been arguing against that for weeks. Hoist. On. Petard.

                  • “At least he didn’t appear in a Liberace get-up.”

                    I’d be surprised if Władziu Valentino Liberace (born 100 years ago in West Allis WESconsin, just east of Waukesha, the fictional birthplace of another Dairy State…um…icon Arthur Herbert Fonzarelli, AKA The Fonz) was never seen sporting a turban ensemble.

                    A closer look at the picture will show Trudeau’s similarly “browned” hands channeling a “best practices” Bidenesque groping of the gal in the dark dress.

                    As HT intimated, were this anyone else (God forbid an EVIL White Conservative Y-Chromosomal Unit) the endless reel cackling cacophony would be positively deafening.

                    This I know because, as a lifelong resident of the 77 Square Miles Surrounded By A Sea Of Reality (the land of the Perpetually Offended), I’m ideally suited to manufacture spittle-flecked grievance with the best of ’em!

                  • Paul, I know that at least you will understand . . .

                    I can’t be sure what bothers me most: that Trudeau culturally appropriates or that he cross-dresses? Isn’t cross-dressing an extreme form of ‘appropriation’?

                    I’m so confused!

              • I like your spirit! You ask really unintelligent questions, and you are far too excitable and bubble over under a low flame, but you do seem to like a good fight, and I was born to fight . . .

                You are a pathetic opponent and yet . . . I thank you!

                If us white folk should be so concerned about the infectious influence of people of non-white, and in particular Spanish-Native Central American descent, then why should any of us listen to you? I mean, you might think I’m a flaming, libertarian, ultra-progressive Canadian, but I was born and raised on steak, potatoes and Yorkshire pudding. If the cultural identity of America is deeply seeded in Anglo-Saxon or European culture, and threatened by Hispanics, then why should my fabulous British Canadian ass give a damn what your self hating half-Jewish Brazilian ass thinks?

                God, that is a fallacious outline. First, if I have never studied Euclid and yet I present to you an irrefutable Euclidian truth, it does not matter that I am illiterate and do not fully understand the truth that I am presenting.

                Similarly, it does not matter if I am half-Jewish (Sephardic Jewish I must add: we have our virtues!) and half-Anglo (which is in fact the case) and yet am presenting to you sound reasonings about issues which may, and may not, be in my own ‘personal’ interest. The question is only if what I talk about has truth-virtue. It is not my person that has relevancy here, but the soundness of the questions themselves.

                This is really basic stuff, Humble Talons, and with it I have defeated your whole fallacious *argument*.

                Only the questions are valid and important, and we do not know the answers nor do we have them and we must not jump to conclusions our of desperation, and all I do is to present the questions: Is it fair and is it valid that a given people show concern about cultural, social, and racial ‘contamination’? Are they allowed to mount a defense? Are they allowed to define why they mount a defense?

                What is the position of Libertarians in respect to these issues? Can they have a position? Does chemically pure Libertarianism allow a position that would allow *a given people* to protect themselves from invasion or dispossession? On what basis would you make a claim if you had one?

                Where does Canada stand, generally speaking, in regard to these cultural and racial questions? And to what degree is your brand of Canadian Libertarianism an example of that general attitude and policy? How do you fit into the present trend that Canada is taking of ‘hyper-progressive multi-culturalism’?

                Are you trying to say to me — I will not accept this fallacy! — that potatoes, steak and Yorkshire pudding turned you gay?!? (That is a bridge too far for my HT …)

                Again, this is a terrible question and contains its own fallacy:

                If the cultural identity of America is deeply seeded in Anglo-Saxon or European culture, and threatened by Hispanics, then why should my fabulous British Canadian ass give a damn what your self hating half-Jewish Brazilian ass thinks?

                The question needs to be: Is the argument about Anglo-Saxonism — its traditions, it capabilities, its achievements — is any of this valid? If it is valid, why is it valid? How would that be explained and defended? And if it is not, how would it be refuted?

                I did not say ‘Hispanics’ I said ‘Meso-Americans’. Hispanic culture is the culture of Spain if one wished to be accurate, and Spain has a similar relation to Europe as Russia and a large part of the Slavic world have to do with Europe. *We* (if I am permitted the usage) bring a great deal to the European body (again of you will permit my uncommon turns of phrase).

                The Mexican Invasion is largely an invasion of Meso-American peasants, and this is also true of those arriving from Guatemala, El Salvador, and Honduras. To define who those people are, and to be fair about it, can definitely and easily be done. Do you see the difference in how these things are presented? You *hear* what I say, and distort it (unconsciously or consciously or a blend thereof).

                Many different American statesmen have explained their concern over too many Meso-Americans entering the America, largely Anglo-Saxon, cultural system. Their arguments have all been reason-based and are quite sound. The arguments that are brought out in favor of abandoning a reason-based approach to the question of excessive immigration are all emotional, distorted, blaming and shaming, and involve ad hominem of the most outrageous sort.

                What if… and you might want to sit down for this: culture is neither written in stone, or strands of DNA? What if culture is a living, breathing, evolving thing, and people are not predetermined to the culture of their birth at the point of conception? What if…. and if you need a drink of water, I suggest you get it now before continuing, culture is separate and discrete from melanin content, and people could either learn or take great steps at a meaningful integration with American culture, which…. And hold on to your Hitler-Youth socks: Is not, and never was, based on even similar values to much of Europe.

                Now, these are far better questions. Based on my research I think there are two poles of answer. One is that, in certain ways, and up to a certain point, what you suggest is true. Therefore: there is Truth here. This cannot be denied nor pushed aside.

                I assume that what you are suggesting here is the philosophical base for your Libertarian outlook. I do not disregard it, but I think it can be — should be — substantially refuted.

                But the other side of the coin is also valid and your ‘side of the coin’ as it were does not remove it from consideration. And that side of the coin, as I have studied the issue, locates our ‘being’ in a group of different ‘fuzzy-sets’ with not absolute border between them. Our genetics, our social patterns, our ‘trajectory’ as a people, our social structures, our metaphysical ideas, and certain *ideas* that have put us into motion and in relation to which we have lived . . . for centuries and millennia — these also are part of the equation and cannot be removed from it.

                And the point is that all of this material, all of these concerns, can be examined cooly and coldly.

                • Methinks the lady doth protest too much.

                  I think anyone who considers anything you write on the same level as an irrefutable Euclidean truth probably has trouble walking and breathing at the same time. The problem I have with you and your writing is that you fail to account for reality, opting instead for an extremely dated philosophy that has always failed to hold up to reality. You seem to come from the position that the political arena has not changed in the last 50 years, and that’s led you to absurd places. As an example: I’m an extreme progressive? Compared to… what? Exactly? How many decades do you have to go back to find people that make me look like a radical progressive? If I’m an extreme progressive, what do you call the people I think are extreme progressives? Is 95% of the political spectrum gradients of progressive extremists, with the other 5% being made up of Neo-Nazi mixer parties?

                  • I think anyone who considers anything you write on the same level as an irrefutable Euclidean truth probably has trouble walking and breathing at the same time.

                    That was not the point, of course.

                    The problem I have with you and your writing is that you fail to account for reality, opting instead for an extremely dated philosophy that has always failed to hold up to reality.

                    This is also a bad argument — within a generally bad argument — since I have made few specific assertions except that the issues in question can be looked at, and should be looked at, and are being looked at, without the prejudice that afflicts your ‘thinking’. But these statements of yours are very complex and knotty and they have to be examined more closely. What do you mean by ‘dated philosophy’? What does ‘accounting for reality’ mean? What has ‘failed to hold up’? You are dealing within some abstractions. In this sort of ‘argumentation’ you can of course control the terms. If this is the route you wish to go, have at it, m’boy.

                    My view, having actually spent some years now closely reading the ‘dated’ material that you are referring to. is that it contains a great deal of sound ideas. If by ‘dated philosophy’ you mean for example Madison Grant or Lothrop Stoddard (and those who think along these lines). And since I have also closely read those who in our present have rediscovered these ideas and are working within these idea-areas, I have some qualification to speak. You have none.

                    When you speak you defend ‘the liberal order’ that has developed out of WWll. You are — this is obvious — a product of this and, as I say, so are we all. Now, ‘all of that’ is rising up with greater power and fury and shows that it will crush those who oppose it. But you can hardly make these connections. I know this. I knoe that you really have no argument at all. And I also know that you have never really thought these matters through. Nor have most people. Therefore, it all sounds like wickedness to you. And this is essentially what is the understructure of your ‘ideas’ on these topics: conventions that you repeat like a trained parrot. And this I understand as well.

                    You seem to come from the position that the political arena has not changed in the last 50 years, and that’s led you to absurd places. As an example: I’m an extreme progressive? Compared to… what? Exactly?

                    You are obviously and beyond any shadow of doubt an ‘extreme progressive’ in exactly the same sense (or very close) to the reasons why Jack is a progressive. You are not conservatives! And you have almost no links to bona fide ‘conservative’ ideas. I read what you write, Humble Talons. That is what I base my assessment on. You have absorbed and integrated all the ideas that progressivism employs or is grounded in. Do you think I am insulting you by saying this? Not at all! I am only being factual and describing ‘what is’. Canada, taken as a whole, is Ultra-Progressive. You speak from within that milieu. This is simply obvious. A child could notice it.

                    What has come out of the Postwar period, and especially through the 60s Events, has been a ‘general outlook’ and a metaphysics that huge swaths of people have bought into and absorbed. These are culture-wide phenomena. It has become ‘normalcy’. Did I ever say and would I ever say that all of this is ‘bad’ or ‘wrong’? No. I say that it should all be examined far more closely. But what is more important is that I point in the direction of people — a developing wave in our present and in our cultures — of people who are examining it in great detail: and also opposing some of its main tenets. For example see what I wrote in regard to Paul Krugman. And I also point in the direction of State apparatuses that are developing very dangerous and quite totalitarian policy to confront opposition.

                    It is you who remain enclosed within constraining ideas.

                    How many decades do you have to go back to find people that make me look like a radical progressive? If I’m an extreme progressive, what do you call the people I think are extreme progressives? Is 95% of the political spectrum gradients of progressive extremists, with the other 5% being made up of Neo-Nazi mixer parties?

                    You are a progressive, that much is certain. You are not a conservative. You are rather mealy-mouthed as far as it goes and you do write entertainingly on some superficial issues with no substantial importance to much of anything. In short (IMHO) you are sort of joke. This sounds like an insult but I don’t mean it fully in that sense. Ideas do not move in you. And you are not an intellectual. But to approach getting clear about our present — this difficult juncture — requires intellectual effort, not silly bantering.

                    What you do not understand is that as progressivism advances, it pulls the ‘anchor’ to which so-called ‘Conservatism’ is essentially attached along with it. These are radical processes within culture for which a solitary individual is not precisely responsible. We have all been dragged along. If anything, I simply suggest that a closer examination of your predicates — and all our predicates — is necessary. I say that it is not immoral to do so. And I also suggest that it is ethical. And I explain why.

                    You desire to be a restraining force, this I admit. And many who write on this blog are ‘conservative’ in the sense that they cannot but act as restraining forces to the rapidly advancing radical progressivism. But I also suggest that you do not have a solid base for a conservatist philosophy and I often write why I think that is, and how it has come about.

                    • Your whole argument takes place outside of argumentation. It is only ad hominem and vain grabs at whatever you can lay your hands on.

                      Everything I have said this morning stands. And you cannot refute it.

                      I appreciate that Jack shows himself on your side. This is fitting of course.

                      You.have.no.argument.

                      It’s a frabjous day when I’m called a Neo-Nazi by progressives, a progressive by a Neo-Nazi and a joke by a fool.

                      Pure vanity. If progressives call you a Neo-Nazi it is obvious that they are absolutely wrong.

                      You employ ad hominem in the worse sense, just like the Lefty-Progressives. There is nothing in any of my views that can fairly be called Neo-Nazi. But this is all that you-plural can *hear*. You do exactly what the Left-Progressives you decry do: you restate something into the worst terms possible just for effect.

                      That is fallacious argumentation, plan and simple.

                      The is a sing-song quality in your retort though. That much is appreciated!

                    • I can’t comment on the content, because I haven’t followed the exchanges.

                      Jack, shhhhhhhhh….

                      (nobody follows the exchanges, but we don’t complain as it keeps the traffic numbers up)

                    • Even that is a false statement: *you* do complain all.the.time.

                      And: my presence and the non-popular ideas I have could in fact drive down readership here. Mentioning unpopular ideas causes many people — you too — to have mini-fits.

                      And at least a certain number of people read what I write.

                      It is good stuff really.

                      If you worked just a bit at it you could probably understand at least some, Slick. 🙂

                    • How can someone not be following this? It’s been asserted that a position which is common and new can’t be termed “progressive” because it’s common and new – progressed-to! I can’t fathom a better proof of the fact that relativist thinking and presupposition of a Whiggish arrow of history (the bedrock assumption of progressivism itself) has been implanted into the heads of our populace.

                      Categorical-unavoidable-proof-attempted-as-disproof

                      I despair, because I fear I’ll never be so entertained again. Twice, because the implications will be lost. The great modern folly is just there on full display, and nobody can see it.

                      Anchorless liberalism can only drift away with the current, and the few steady ships, from a hypnotically enforced relative perspective, can only appear to be drifting right.

                    • I’m very thankful that you seem to see something similar to what I see, Benjamin.

                      Anchorless liberalism can only drift away with the current, and the few steady ships, from a hypnotically enforced relative perspective, can only appear to be drifting right.

                  • OK, I feel better. I was pretty hard on him. Yet what always amazes me is that you slaughter someone but they just won’t stay slaughtered. Some mysterious resurrection powder they have . . . 🙂

                    • “Your whole argument takes place outside of argumentation. It is only ad hominem and vain grabs at whatever you can lay your hands on.”

                      I want to remind you that my original take was that I thought that the crisis in Beijing and the inevitable refugee claims that will come out of it would be an interesting case study, which would, in my opinion, produce proof that resistance to immigration at the Southern border had very little to do with base racism, and more to do with bona fide immigration requirements, and that pleased me.

                      You… Actually never commented on that. You sucked on down this rabbit hole on the taxonomy of political beliefs. I have to admit, I don’t respond to your points because I don’t overly care what you choose to call it, except that it might confuse people who routinely exist in the here and now and understand the common parlance of terms. So long as I think a marginally intelligent person could follow my points it if they wanted to approach the discussion in good faith, that’s good enough for me. If you’re not intelligent enough to understand: I don’t care what you think, and if you don’t approach it in good faith, I don’t care what you say. You are like an exceptionally shitty Socrates.

                      The thing that concerns me, I suppose, Is your predication to paraphrase white supremacist or Nazi talking points, coach them in an absolutely outstanding amount of pleonasm, and blast them out as code. I don’t go around calling every Tom, Dick or Harry these terms. When I use them, I understand the seriousness of those terms, and I use them only when I think they apply, and when someone starts talking about Nations founded for European (read: white) children, among other things, I get this whiff of both Duke and Goebbels that I just can’t overlook. If that makes me a progressive in your mind… Well, we’ve already gone over how much I appreciate your input. What I find interesting is that you never refute the idea, in fact, when you think you can get away with it, you even engage it, never quite coming out and saying it clearly, but doubling down in a bloody tome of text, maybe hoping that not everyone will read it. Only those enlightened few, right?

                      On a completely tangential note to anything I’d like to discuss, I find it really interesting that both you and your friend passing in the night seem to understand what *real* conservatism is, but fail to define it, except in describing what it is not, and what it is not is apparently the vast, vast majority of society, except for a couple of stalwarts who have “anchored their boats” in the past, so to speak…. Which I would take as an admission of being right when I said that your ideology fails to take into account current reality, if I were a more petty person. What I find really interesting is the point in time you’ve apparently chosen to anchor your specific definition of conservatism to, Why not 20,000 BC? Why not a Roman take? Why not an 1800’s Irish take? Why are you so fixated at tying conservatism to ideas that only gained prominence at a very specific time in European history, and almost immediately died under the weight of their own idiocy? And why on Earth should anyone else do the same?

                      “You.have.no.argument.”

                      No, I’m just not engaging yours. Pot. Kettle.

    • Immigration is one of the places where international politics and Geopolitical Strategy meets domestic policy. When it comes to Geopolitics, there is no standard that says we have to be consistent, because in Geopolitics, while we maintain consistent values, those values run into a wide range of contexts and situations that change the weights of those values.

      That being said. A nation (us) being flooded by an immediate neighbor (central America), for whom the new arrivals have less incentive to break with the mother culture because of proximity, is vastly more concerning than a smaller quantity (HK) from a mother country (China) that is a 6,000-mile-wide ocean away.

      Again, there’s no inconsistency in a differing policy here, because different values are at play and where similar values are at play, they are weighted differently given the contexts.

    • Asylum has two basic requirements. First, an asylum applicant must establish that he or she fears persecution from their Government in their home country.[5] Second, the applicant must prove that he or she would be persecuted on account of one of five protected grounds: race, religion, nationality, political opinion, or particular social group.[6](Link)

      With the exception of maybe Venezuela, Central and South American asylum seekers are not fleeing political or ethnic persecution; they are rather fleeing general violence and mayhem. China, however, is deliberately targeting pro-democratic citizens in a concerted effort to bring Hong Kong under totalitarian rule. And they want to do it subtly enough to not provoke a direct conflict with the British or other western allies.

      Hong Kong, most similarly to Cuba in the past, is a much clearer case of asylum.

  4. Speaking of movies, I hope Jack will be proud that last night I watched “Stagecoach” for the first time. 1939 John Wayne was just as cool as always. Some great moments in that film, of course, and some treatment of minorities and animals that have since changed (at least in film). My wife is going to show it in her Film History class, and is planning to discuss these changes. It made me think of several things we’ve read on these pages regarding changing history: do we no longer show “Stagecoach” because of the way it portrays Native Americans or the way it filmed riders getting shot off their horses? (The horses were apparently hooked up to what was called a “Flying W,” a rig that had a limited length of chain. At the end of the chain, the horse tripped and the rider jumped off. Many horses were severely injured or killed in the process.) Or do we discuss “Stagecoach” in the view of the times it was written and how we’ve managed to figure out how to make things better since then? Yeah, that’s a pretty easy answer for most people, conservative or liberal. MOST…

    • I am proud of you, and it is, as I’m sure you found, a remarkable movie. The trip wires issue is silly to obsess over now; beating a dead horse, literally. The treatment of Native Americans by Ford was usually respectful. The bit about the Mexican’s “savage” wife spoofed fears of Indians, and Native Americans did attack stagecoaches—I don’t see how anyone can complain about Ford using it as a plot point.

      Other than the Duke, who is completely compelling and solid (and beautiful) as ever, Thomas Mitchell steals the film.

  5. This was broached in the Signature Significance Again From The NYT post by Samuel Halverson and bears repeating because it is the very embodiment of signature significance.

    There was a Robin Pogrebin in Justice Kavanaugh’s Yale Class of ’87.

    You don’t think…nah; couldn’t be, am I right?

    Funniest thing; this gal not only stayed in the SAME freshman year dorm as Justice Kavanaugh, but they knew/hung out with some of the same people and, quoth she, “we overlapped to that extent.”

    The side-splitting/knee-slapping/open-guffaw-inducing kicker? Pogrebin failed to disclose that in her heretical screed.

    This is starting to make Duke LaCrosse and Jussie Smollett look like misunderstandings.

  6. Reverend Al Sharpton tweets he was “saddened to hear of the passing of legendary journalist Cookie Roberts”

    One small problem; the accompanying graphic features images of him with Christiane Amanpour

    Gotcha or what one might expect from a monumentally imbecilic, homophobic, victim-mongering, anti-semitic, hate-filled, divisive, racist?

  7. I really like Krugman — he is an amazing, a wunderful intellect. He (accurately) locates the real crazies among us in white rural America, those who feel they are losing their country, and goes on to indicate that their days are numbered.

    He indicates that we will be in a ‘difficult time’ until they do finally go away, and from my side what I take away is a sense of hope — whew! — that things are going to lighten up eventually and get back into a normal track.

      • A people was here, stable, had been occupying the same territory for fifteen or twenty centuries. And suddenly, very quickly, in one or two generations, one or several other peoples substitute themselves for him. He is replaced, it is not him anymore.

        — Renaud Camus, 2013 interview for Action Française.

        Red Ice Radio, the producer of that clip, along with most if not all of the Dissident Right, attempts to demonstrate through presentation and discussion that there are people out there who have nefarious intentions.

        [Latin nefārius, from nefās, crime, transgression : ne-, not; see ne in Indo-European roots + fās, divine law; see dhē- in Indo-European roots.

        Adj. 1. nefarious – extremely wicked; “nefarious schemes”; “a villainous plot”; “a villainous band of thieves”; villainous, wicked – morally bad in principle or practice]

        I like that word ‘nefarious’ but I also recognize that to be accurate I would have to shift it from its original meaning or choose a somewhat different word.

        I have made this suggestion many times and, at the very least, it is a topic for consideration: I will not say, necessarily, that Krugman & Company are deliberately evil, though it may be that in the end their choices and their vision may result in an evil. More interesting and more revealing it is to grasp that we are dealing here with radically different ideas about what America is and (of course) what it should be.

        Now, if there is a person or a group of persons — an interest-set — which has determined that there is a specific direction that America should go, and where they determine it should go is different than what and where it is and what it had been, then the issue of ‘social engineering’ comes to light. In respect to that the term ‘machination’ also becomes important because a ‘machination’ is the enactment of a plan.

        It is correct and fair to say that Paul Krugman & Company have involved themselves in a specific project to mold America into an image that they feel is the good, proper and necessary one. The only people that can carry out such a project are those who have social, academic, communications and industrial power. Therefore, one has to begin to examine what these ‘groupings’ are, these factions of influential persons who use their power and their resources to mold America into the civic entity that they determine os ‘good & proper’. To all appearances the huge social conflict that is developing in America — one which no one is very clear where it will go and how it will end up since this really is ‘untraveled territory’ — is a power-battle between differing factions, differing power-groupings within the country.

        Obviously, there is a ‘deep state’ interest and investment in the solidification of this New America (what else would one call what Krugman is describing?) and I gather that the titanic battles that have been playing out in the news for some years now are what we see, and what we are allowed to see, of deep, interior machinations and struggles within the governmental system. This is not only an ideological issue but it is a managerial (governmental) issue.

        From the look of it I think that one can make a fair and ‘balanced’ statement, if we do take seriously what Krugman says and what he means, and look at it in the light of *what is going on around us* which, and this is important to say, we witness, we sort-of see and we sort-of understand, but which is not completely clear and in focus. Now, what is that? What is that in essence?

        Just as *we* have been saying it is a replacement project. The Great Replacement is not a paranoid phantasy. No, because we can refer to statements that these people — here in America and in Europe — are making. There are a number of dozen of such video clips of important, influential people making clear statements about what they intend, why they intend it, and how it is being carried out.

        So, out of this — and if what I have described is fair and accurate and shall I say *real* — a whole group of questions & concerns float to the surface. Is it ethical to notice statements made by Kruger and people like him?

        I mean this quite literally: is it ethical to have a mind that is tuned to focus on this sort of statement? or is it, in itself, evidence of nefariousness? Am I allowed to notice what I notice and to talk about it? Am I allowed to consult with other people and to share my concerns? Am I allowed to be concerned that there are people who are speaking about the replacement of some group of people (in this case the ‘original demographic)? Do I have ethical or moral justification in being concerned that there are people who have determined that what is good and proper is that I ‘race-blend’ because they have decided that this is the way things should be? Am I allowed to have concerns about my genetic make-up, the genetic composition of my own body, and my own ‘trajectory’ as a biological and as an intellectual agent? I can go on & on & on & on with question after question that flows from the initial perception & understanding!

        So now, conversely, Who has a right to tell me that I am not justified to have the concerns that I have? and which I can outline in clear, common-sense terms? Who? Who is that person and where is this group that has more right to determine *me* than I do to determine myself?

        These are the kinds of questions that the developing Dissident Right is working on. We get *mild* help from standard Conservatives, and sometimes no help at all (and often open opposition). But I would like the ethicists here to please address the concerns that I have brought up in fair terms, rationally, without calling names and without being ‘hysterical’ or ‘extremist’.

        • Alizia. I think Krugman and De Blasio are delusional. Come to the U.S. you will see literally million upon millions of people going about their daily lives keeping the entire country moving along. You think Paul Krugman fixes his furnace when if doesn’t work or patches his roof when it leaks. He’s a madman. Look at his eyes!

          • DeBlasio’s a waste of bandwidth, him hypocritically stuffing his piehole with IA State Fair fare he’d ban in a New York min…well…you get the picture.

            Krugman? A special place the other side of the Styx awaits.

            Why? He’s an outspoken Warmalista Alarmacyst, yet, count the Solar Panels.

          • Alizia. I think Krugman and De Blasio are delusional. Come to the U.S. you will see literally million upon millions of people going about their daily lives keeping the entire country moving along. You think Paul Krugman fixes his furnace when it doesn’t work or patches his roof when it leaks. He’s a madman. Look at his eyes!

            If you read what I write you know that I refer to ‘causation’ frequently. It is a simple idea but a profound — even a disturbing — one. We are the product of causation which we can’t see and don’t understand. Now, let me start by saying that we live in a time of tremendous corruption. When corruption is ‘flowering’. Yet if one examines ‘causation’ one sees, quite quickly, that there is a ‘causal chain’, and if one follows the causal chain back on can begin to notice the points where corrupting choices were made.

            There is in today’s NYSlimes an opinion-piece by Michelle Goldberg on Roy Cohn. I’d never paid any attention to him nor knew who he was. But it is interesting to see that he seemed to have been a severely corrupt individual — and only a corrupt lawyer really can play the terrestrial role of a satanic figure — within a social milieu and a ‘temporal modality’ that was rapidly putrefying. I assume that you and others might agree with me that America has become infected with corruption. I think that is what ‘swamp’ refers to when speaking of Washington politics.

            Where I come from is a position of attempting to understand what it is that corrupts. So I am necessarily interested in the ‘causal chain’. This has many many different implication. Richard Weaver in Ideas Have Consequences follows a causal chain back to the 14th century to locate a point where a very consequential choice was made. I won’t mention the details but it has to do with a shift in how *reality* is viewed and how it is described. The point? Simple: Ideas have consequences, and we live in the consequences and the ramifications of choices that have been made and we do not have the vision nor the understanding to *see* what these choice-events were.

            Now, let me contextualize this in an interesting way which I am sure will make sense to the dozens — the hundreds and the thousands! — who read what I write:

            Edward Bernays in Propaganda (1928),

            “The conscious and intelligent manipulation of the organized habits and opinions of the masses is an important element in democratic society. Those who manipulate this unseen mechanism of society constitute an invisible government which is the true ruling power of our country. … We are governed, our minds are molded, our tastes formed, our ideas suggested, largely by men we have never heard of. This is a logical result of the way in which our democratic society is organized. Vast numbers of human beings must cooperate in this manner if they are to live together as a smoothly functioning society. …In almost every act of our daily lives, whether in the sphere of politics or business, in our social conduct or our ethical thinking, we are dominated by the relatively small number of persons…who understand the mental processes and social patterns of the masses. It is they who pull the wires which control the public mind.”

            I cannot agree, not precisely, with your view that De Blasio and Krugman are merely delusional. I think we need to use other terms. What other terms? Well, that quickly becomes a difficult and knotty and highly contested and acrimonious inquiry because it has to do with locating corruption, and no corrupt figure wants to be labeled such. By its nature corruption hides in the shadows. It wants to present a face-of-decency while it engages in nefarious activities. My orientation is Thomist. I cannot think of a more useful conceptual tool than to understand the Thomist/Christian/Aristotelian notion of the corruption of the human entity: a physical and natural structure in which a ‘soul’ resides. You cannot have a corrupt society of persons until you have one corrupt individual. And an individual becomes corrupt in specific ways that can be described. Take for example ‘the corruption of imagination’. An individual has to be introduced, visually, to images [of corrupt activites] that infest his and her imagination. So, imagination is a very important term in Thomist psychology. The imagination is the door through which corrupting influences enter the human entity. In itself it is ‘invisible’ and has no material existence. It is ‘idea’ and it is non-physical: it is metaphysical.

            Just with this very basic mention of ‘imagination’ you will easily be able to understand what I am getting at with a reference to Bernays and the statement: ‘We are governed, our minds are molded, our tastes formed, our ideas suggested, largely by men we have never heard of’, and ‘We are dominated by the relatively small number of persons…who understand the mental processes and social patterns of the masses. It is they who pull the wires which control the public mind’.

            I have to merely suggest certain ideas so that those who read can make the connection which in my view should be obvious. Sadly, they are not obvious. In fact very few seem to make the connections. Why is that? I would answer that it is because we live in a dumbed-down culture. That is to say that we live in the outcome of decadence and the destructive undermining of intelligence (in its Thomist sense mind you: this is crucial).

            If we are going to reverse the corruption that exists around us and which is a flowering of past choices and actions, we have to understand what corruption is. And [I suggest] the only way to really understand corruption is to understand it in its spiritual sense: an infection within the body/mind of a given individual. Who is that individual and who are those individuals? They are us. We are the ‘outcome’ and we are the cresting wave. This leads of course to another important concept: complicity. I mention this and I do not think I have once received affirmation or support in this idea! You have no idea how shocking this is to me when supposedly I am writing on a ‘Conservative’ platform.

            We are all profoundly complicit in the deep and destructive corruptions of the day — those that we now notice rising up and on the verge of doing great harm to us. But to ‘complain’ as I say and to point our finger at ‘them’ — those ‘over there’ — is to employ an evasive tactic of psychological projection.

            You see if there is going to be a reversal of this ‘flowering of evil’ there will have to be — there is required and it cannot be avoided — an interior renovation which is, of course, an interior spiritual work [in essence]. There are people now who are working in these areas. They are almost all of them on the Dissident Right and the Dissident Right is taking an adversarial position to and against the conventional conservatism which is, of course it is! deeply and profoundly complicit in the corruption which plagues us — interiorly in our own corrupted selves, and exteriorly in what we see revolving and machinating around us.

            Paul Krugman and what he is saying, specifically, connects to ideas and activities that need to be exposed to the light of day. The implications of what he is saying and what a dozen others like him say in respect to this specific project of white replacement connects to an insidious cultural and social project which is the embodiment, if you will, of causal chains of corruption [and destruction] that have their roots in former times and choices. If we are now ‘dumbed-down’ and we cannot clearly recognize these things, it is an ethical and moral imperative of the first order that we quickly gain understanding so that we can oppose 1) what he specifically says and desires and 2) the even more consequential implications of what these social policies will lead to and are leading to.

  8. How about the ethics of celebrity roasts? Alec Baldwin being roasted by his daughter? Sure he’s an asshole, but is this really a good idea? A daughter abusing her father in public?

  9. Here is something to write about.

    https://www.mediaite.com/tv/tucker-carlson-democrats-hypocritical-on-gun-violence-because-they-support-physician-assisted-suicide/

    Carlson made the comment while debating a gun control activist on Tuesday night — a segment he started by playing clips of various Democrats calling for long rifle bans, confiscations, and buy backs.

    “If we had less access to guns and less access to ammunition, the suicides would plummet and gun deaths … would decrease. 93 people are killed every single day by guns,” noted Democratic strategist Bernard Whitman.

    “Are you against suicide now?” Carlson shot back. “I thought the left supported suicide. Last time I checked, the state of Maine for example, the left has made physician assisted suicide legal. The left pushed that, I’m opposed to it. So are you for or against suicide? I’m kind of losing track.”

    After his guest noted that he does not, in fact, generally support suicide but does believe in some legal exceptions between a “doctor and patient,” the Fox News host replied, “Okay, I get it, you’re going to take my guns away because of suicide but meanwhile you are making suicide legal … The B.S. is just too much.”

    • Ah, Paul! I hate to ever disappoint you, but the first paragraph loses me with “broken window,” “opportunity cost,” but, most of all, “Freemason”! [p’tui]

      I’m ordering a print of a glorious, heroic painting of Jacques Cathelineau, the Saint of Anjou and French Counterrevolutionary war hero. Even the Classical Liberals aren’t classical enough for me, alas. I’m more of a resist-the-enlightenment-to-the-bitter-end type. Or at least, I’ll hang the likenesses of those who did over my mantle. “Dieu et le roi!”

  10. I wrote: “Your whole argument takes place outside of argumentation. It is only ad hominem and vain grabs at whatever you can lay your hands on.”

    Humble Talent commented:

    I want to remind you that my original take was that I thought that the crisis in Beijing and the inevitable refugee claims that will come out of it would be an interesting case study, which would, in my opinion, produce proof that resistance to immigration at the Southern border had very little to do with base racism, and more to do with bona fide immigration requirements, and that pleased me.

    Your observation is a valid one, as far as I am able to tell. But I think that I may have more experience with the thinking of the Dissident Right than you do — these are the people who are doing the intellectual work to define new potential policies — and so I can speak to what you are saying. Now, these people of the Dissident Right you would necessarily label as ‘racist’ and ‘supremacist’ and you use the same technique, as it were, of the Left-Progressives. It is an unfair and it is a fallacious tactic.

    But to make a long story short — and I refer to Greg Johnson who does a fine job of articulating a sound intellectual and philosophical opinion — we would rather be among our own people, even if they were not as skilled or intelligent or capable as Chinese Hong Kongians, than to see our community and our culture flooded with very different sorts of persons. The Dissident Right and the Race Realist Right, in my view, sees racial difference very clearly and very rationally. It is opposed by hysterical types who do not reason in fair terms. It sees things, obviously, in genuine conservatist terms: of preserving and protecting something worthy of being preserved and protected. To better understand *our* ideas read The White Nationalist Manifesto’ by Greg Johnson. All the information you need is there.

    You… Actually never commented on that. You sucked on down this rabbit hole on the taxonomy of political beliefs. I have to admit, I don’t respond to your points because I don’t overly care what you choose to call it, except that it might confuse people who routinely exist in the here and now and understand the common parlance of terms. So long as I think a marginally intelligent person could follow my points it if they wanted to approach the discussion in good faith, that’s good enough for me. If you’re not intelligent enough to understand: I don’t care what you think, and if you don’t approach it in good faith, I don’t care what you say. You are like an exceptionally shitty Socrates.

    I did in fact make a reference to the fact that Hong Kongians should stay in Hong Kong, and I did so because I operate within predicates that seem completely of good, common sense. That is, it hardly needs to be described by the American super-majority population — of mostly white Europeans — should have been maintained and not diluted through nefarious projects, machination and engineering. I have written about this dozens of times and anyone who bothers to read what I write and to be concerned for the positions of those who write here (this necessitates reading what they write!) already knows that I am oriented in this way.

    The ‘rabbit hole’ you refer to is one that it is necessary to see and expose. But I am more interested in your ‘rabbit hole’ you see: the rabbit hole that determines your views. You see? I turn the lens of examination around and make you to topic of inquiry. This is what ‘true conservatism’ must do: examine the radical ideas and their radical proponents, and contra-dict them: oppose their constructs.

    You are a strange Canadian Libertarian, and that in and of itself is a radical position. That is what I see and understand. But I also have noticed — and said it openly — that I see Jack as a radical-of-sorts. And I carefully define what I mean.

    You don’t have to ‘respond to my points’ or anyone’s points. Except that this is a discussion forum. I do respond to your points and any points that I desire to.

    I do not ever use the term ‘stupid’ or ‘idiot’ — those are special terms used here. I don’t think you or anyone else writing her is stupid. I think you are indoctrinated in the most precise sense of the word. And I can talk about this doctrine, and oppose it. I say ‘contradict’ because it means inserting contrary notions — correctives.

    The thing that concerns me, I suppose, Is your predication to paraphrase white supremacist or Nazi talking points, couch them in an absolutely outstanding amount of pleonasm, and blast them out as code. I don’t go around calling every Tom, Dick or Harry these terms. When I use them, I understand the seriousness of those terms, and I use them only when I think they apply, and when someone starts talking about Nations founded for European (read: white) children, among other things, I get this whiff of both Duke and Goebbels that I just can’t overlook. If that makes me a progressive in your mind… Well, we’ve already gone over how much I appreciate your input. What I find interesting is that you never refute the idea, in fact, when you think you can get away with it, you even engage it, never quite coming out and saying it clearly, but doubling down in a bloody tome of text, maybe hoping that not everyone will read it. Only those enlightened few, right?

    Notice that you have used the fallacious tactic of encapsulating, extremely negatively, what you think my *points* are by making me agree to your use of the terms ‘white supremacist and Nazi talking points’. Isn’t this an example of the ‘So, are you still beating your wife?’ fallacy? It is unfair argumentation. But it indicates more: your own contamination or ‘bias’ I guess someone might say. By using these terms in the way you use them you indicate, perhaps without understanding it, the degree to which your thinking –progressive and libertarian — has been influenced by Postwar ‘liberal’ categories. I notice this of course, stop you right there, and force you to examine these predicates and their prejudices. You resist this, of course, because you see your position as ‘normal’: metaphysically normal and God-given: determined by a proper metaphysical order. And you do this in exactly the same way that Lefty-Progressives do.

    So, I shift the terms of the discussion. I am not the focus, you are the focus.

    But you do allude to an important topic of discussion and intellectual consideration. You refer to David Duke and to Joseph Goebbles though as a way of keeping that conversation — the terms for a sound and productive conversation on a range of difficult ideas — off the table and therefore impossible to discuss. These again are the techniques of the Left. Shaming. Shadowing. Framing. This tactic is a culture-wide one. It pervades media, the academy, and the thinking of the people who write on this blog. You merely demonstrate why it is used and why it is effective.

    In answer to what you are trying to get at — your vilification essentially — I refer to the work of Madison Grant, Lothrop Stoddard and also to Wilmot Robertson: authors whose works I have studied closely and in detail over a 5-7 year period (Robertson only recently). I have also read 50% of Duke’s autobiography. Now, I accept, largely, their understanding of things and their analysis. I am talking more about Stoddard and Grant. Duke is a different case (though I will say, an illegal idea! that ‘Duke is a great American’. You will imagine that with that you have automatically won the argument. Who could say such a thing in our present?!? But I do say it. And I can explain why).

    What I find interesting is that you never refute the idea, in fact, when you think you can get away with it, you even engage it, never quite coming out and saying it clearly, but doubling down in a bloody tome of text, maybe hoping that not everyone will read it. Only those enlightened few, right?

    I do not refute it because all truly conservative thought must deal in genuine conservation. And I made a determination to try to get to the bottom of it. To expose it and to see it. Lothrop Stoddard gave America its national parks for example. He definitely had a conservationist frame of mind. But since you have not ever read him, nor do you understand his context, you are functionally outside of any conversation about him or his thought. He is for you a thoughtcriminal, and you illustrate Orwellian categories. You show how they function. You are a radical progressive more than you are a Conservative for these reasons. Again I turn the lens of examination around. You are the subject.

    If you ever want to talk about the authentic root of true conservative thought, this can be brought out. But you can’t even get to the perifery of it because of all these Orwellian mechanisms that are part of your *thinking*. In the end I will present you with a bill for my help here.

    On a completely tangential note to anything I’d like to discuss, I find it really interesting that both you and your friend passing in the night seem to understand what *real* conservatism is, but fail to define it, except in describing what it is not, and what it is not is apparently the vast, vast majority of society, except for a couple of stalwarts who have “anchored their boats” in the past, so to speak…. Which I would take as an admission of being right when I said that your ideology fails to take into account current reality, if I were a more petty person. What I find really interesting is the point in time you’ve apparently chosen to anchor your specific definition of conservatism to, Why not 20,000 BC? Why not a Roman take? Why not an 1800’s Irish take? Why are you so fixated at tying conservatism to ideas that only gained prominence at a very specific time in European history, and almost immediately died under the weight of their own idiocy? And why on Earth should anyone else do the same?

    This is another example of an ugly technique of associating two people that you desire to vilify. I never team-up with anyone against anyone else. You use underhanded ‘association’ technique here to imply that ‘my friend passing int he night’ thinks as I do on all matters. I doubt that. I think that Benjamin agrees in some respects with my Thomist base to certain parts of my thinking. But the real fact of the matter is that I live in, and write out of, a more profound internal conflict. That is to say that I am, internally, involved more deeply in a cultural conflict possibly defined as Reformation/Counter-Reformation. But let us leave that aside.

    What I say is that everything must be brought out and put on the table for examination. Everything that *you* and others push underground or to the side: all of this has to be brought out for open and fair discussion. Yes, I do not think that you nor anyone writing here really has a solid idea of what the philosophical grounding of Conservatism is, and why it has that ground, and what it must conserve. That is true. But it is just opinion until I have demonstrated why I think that. I can. Or better put I am working in that direction.

    The rest of what you have written in this whimsical paragraph is silliness: childish musing. So I will leave it at that.

    • Here, my darling child, you can read a bit more of my Thomist (or neo-Thomist) position.

      Yes, yes, I know, you don’t read any of it but in any case there it is. Enjoy not reading! 🙂

      The purpose of discussion is to understand what a given person’s orientation is, why they think as they do. I reveal my reasons openly. Please refute me and correct them if I have gotten it wrong.

    • I love how you casually sprinkle in things like “To better understand *our* ideas read The White Nationalist Manifesto’ by Greg Johnson.” or “the American super-majority population — of mostly white Europeans — should have been maintained and not diluted through nefarious projects, machination and engineering” and then bitch that I’m comparing you to other people who have said things almost identical to this.

      I also love how you can complain bitterly about being lumped in with Duke and Goebbels despite creating quotes that the average historically literate person would not be able to deny the possibility of them having said, while simultaneously lumping me in with progressives on the very weak auspices of “using the same tactics they do”, as if that’s actually meaningful. It doesn’t make what I say less true, and it doesn’t validate your argument, it just makes you a hypocrite.

      I mean, if the argument is so much more important than the labels, why spend thousands of words attempting unsuccessfully to define those labels (because you still have yet to define what a conservative actually is), and spilling an ungodly amount of e-ink attempting to paint me as progressive, while almost completely ignoring the arguments?

      Alizia: Dance around it all you want. I believe, genuinely, that you *are* a white supremacist, and that you *have* some exceptionally shitty ideas about the way the world should work. And these things coupled with a terminal case of logorrhea, and the inability to actually approach these discussions honestly means that I don’t have much use for you. I am quickly regretting going back on my decision not to engage with time sinks like you, as I always seem to end up doing.

      Have the last words, I’m done.

      • Humble Talons, you silly silly child! You never began so you can’t now end! You are driven by your emotional predicates, far less by reasonable ones. This is what must be seen and confronted. You are the subject here, you are the topic. You have to be studied, exposed and understood.

        In this sense you are the problem. You are definitely connected with it!

        In order for you to understand the Dissident Right of today, you will have to go back over all the very difficult material that had been vilified through ideological and propaganda machinations in the Postwar. You will have to notice and deconstruct what we now call PC thinking: the intrusion of coercive and determined thinking into our more interior levels. This is what ‘dumbing down’ means! You will have to understand this. You will have to confront it. And you will have to choose free thinking as your ideal. You will have to conceive of this as possible and desirable.

        You are not there now. As I pointed out, and as I think is evident, you are anything but conservative in any accurate or true sense of the word.

        To understand the Dissident Right: yes, this means confronting and understanding the cores of conservative thinking and their relationship to the defensive, and offensive, posture of social conservatism and fascism and counter-propositional relations to Marxism and Communism. The European Interwar. You will have to understand how the wide group of ideas that became channeled into fascist thought came to be, and the various streams of thought that were involved.

        I do not ‘b**tch’ that you make reference to Duke, to problematic American (provincial) nationalism, nor to state enterprises that are totalitarian (German nationalism as well as propaganda apparatuses). My point is that it is exactly these things, in the context of Hyper-Liberalism as it shows untoward features, that we need to bring out in the open and to talk about.

        What I ‘b&Ytch’ about is that you do everything in your power to curtail a conversation and to keep it from developing. You use a Duke or Nazi reference to make sure that the difficult aspects cannot be brought our and discussed. You pretend to open conversation which you completely shut it down.

        This is ubiquitous today. The full conversation cannot be had, anywhere.

        I also love how you can complain bitterly about being lumped in with Duke and Goebbels despite creating quotes that the average historically literate person would not be able to deny the possibility of them having said, while simultaneously lumping me in with progressives on the very weak auspices of “using the same tactics they do”, as if that’s actually meaningful. It doesn’t make what I say less true, and it doesn’t validate your argument, it just makes you a hypocrite.

        Again you can only hear what you emotionalism dictates. You have to be capable of distinguishing differences, my dear child, and Duke is not comparable with Goebbles! You are wildly wrong if you think that! Duke is more comparable with the Founders and even with Jefferson (as one example) and he is in that sense entirely American.

        The fact that you group such disparate people in the same category, and sentence, shows that your method of reasoning is weird, afflicted. Similarly, if you think that Greg Johnson is non-different from Joseph Goebbles, you are far off track. But in order to understand relationality, such as it may exist, you will have to have read these people closely. You have not (and I have never read Goebbles myself and I could not make it past 30 pages of Mein Kampf).

        You have to establish a fair ground for conversation, and you have to show yourself capable of having a fair conversation. You don’t have this capability. Why? Because the tenets of radical progressivism have their hooks in you in ways that are invisible to you!

        You have only worked to make a conversation impossible. And that is your objective: just like the Leftist-Progressives of our day. Same techniques, same intentions.

        Alizia: Dance around it all you want. I believe, genuinely, that you *are* a white supremacist, and that you *have* some exceptionally shitty ideas about the way the world should work.

        I think I know pretty clearly exactly who I am and what I am. I can define myself. I certainly don’t need an irrational hysteric to do it, nor can you do it well or fairly!

        In some senses I do not deny what you assert. I am strongly Eurocentric. And this has an element of romanticism (in the proper sense of the word). The more that I look into the issue the more strongly committed to this Eurocentrism I become.

        But is it ‘white supremacy’ in the sense of rulership and domination over others? Definitely not. In fact, the opposite. I strongly believe that different people have a right to define themselves and protect themselves from invasive machination. My views are more close to American Republicanism and Constitutionalism (in this area).

        I do not have problems with people who are of other races. I have problems with being forced to become blended racially and genetically with dissimilar peoples in the context of a distorted Americanism: the Americanopolis. And yes, I am opposed to that Americanism. I have written about that for years now.

        Nothing I have said is cause for any shame and I feel none. It is not unethical and it is not immoral. Yet at your hand this is the way you handle me: it is coercive and violent and manipulative in its way.

        Making any sense? The mirror, how hard it is to gaze at oneself.

      • On a completely tangential note to anything I’d like to discuss, I find it really interesting that both you and your friend passing in the night seem to understand what *real* conservatism is, but fail to define it, except in describing what it is not,

        I can only imagine this dig is a response to feelings of umbrage or betrayal or being ganged-upon when I suggested that your underlying assumptions, which I knew you’d never intentionally discuss, were on full display. You weren’t assuaged in these feelings by contributions and commentary by the others who seemed more conciliatory toward you which preceded mine. Perhaps you saw me as one giving an enemy comfort. Emotional rationalizations aside, it is still a dig. I’ve gone on at length about political philosophy and how it is properly a branch of a larger organism rooted in the ground. I’ve even cast off the term “conservative” in open disgust as I find it’s been applied to right-liberals.

        and what it is not is apparently the vast, vast majority of society, except for a couple of stalwarts who have “anchored their boats” in the past, so to speak….

        My initial bemusement was at how you’d openly termed you position as not being rooted in any philosophy but in some sort of historical progression. I should warn you, again because it was part of my initial observation – if only tongue-in-cheek – that this is a technique called “Whig history.” It doesn’t demonstrate a continuous growing in collective consciousness (a Marxist term, another warning) toward perfection through a process of becoming, it presupposes it even as it uses that presupposition as evidence for that presupposition. The thing presupposed simply is progressivism. It’s even the name. You outed yourself as a right-progressive even as you assert – as a means of asserting, even – your conservative bona fides. This is was what I called humorous.

        The reason to reject or accept any idea or set of ideas is correctness and correctness alone. I will never be convinced to abandon a true philosophy by appeals to a “vast majority” or apparent winners or losers in global coups d’eta. The former is obviously argumentum ad populum, and the latter is presumption of materialist utilitarian power worship for the sake of proving itself – again, I would need to accept your position in order to accept your position, the question is begged. If, instead, the question “What is ‘man’ and how does he flourish?” is first tended to in philosophical and theological terms (because it’s a philosophical/theological question), then the ground for a stable civilization is laid. When the answers to that question are avoided, civilization is as a house with no foundation (the temptation to draw you a Whiggish history of my own paralleling the collapse of states with the collapse of the people’s unifying philosophy would overwhelm a smaller man). Indeed, if the question is avoided, subsequent dependent ones such as “What is a government’s purpose?” and “What actions can a government rightly perform?” then go unanswered, or at least the traditional answers no longer have validation and wither away over generations. A dead stick detached from a disintegrating tree blows in the wind across the lawn. If that sounds dull and familiar, it’s because you’ve read one of the many other comments I’ve placed here. I iterate and reiterate this point constantly. Perhaps it’s become so consistent that you can’t even see it anymore, like water to a fish. Perhaps you ignore me. It’s not so much that I’ve been slighted per se but that it creates the doubt as to whether I should bother. Perhaps man is rightly a herd animal and the expectation that the majority can me made to understand principle over and against the acceptance of crowds is unrealistic.

        What I find really interesting is the point in time you’ve apparently chosen to anchor your specific definition of conservatism to, Why not 20,000 BC? Why not a Roman take? Why not an 1800’s Irish take? Why are you so fixated at tying conservatism to ideas that only gained prominence at a very specific time in European history, and almost immediately died under the weight of their own idiocy? And why on Earth should anyone else do the same?

        Assuming you or anyone has read this, given the staleness of the thread, look at the above quote which came after my initial prodding. See if you can see my point now!

        I’m not picking on Mr. Talent. In this particular instance he just happens to be exemplifying exactly what I keep going on about. This isn’t specific to him. This is the state of modern politics as a whole – Democrat, Republican, Libertarian; unmoored ships, all.

        • Fuck, there’s two of you now.

          “I can only imagine this dig is a response to feelings of umbrage or betrayal or being ganged-upon when I suggested that your underlying assumptions, which I knew you’d never intentionally discuss, were on full display.”

          If that’s the case, then you suffer from a terminal lack of imagination. Frankly, you have yet to attempt to discuss an underlying assumption, and to this moment neither you or the crazy cat lady actually defined what you think “conservative” as a label actually applies to. You are rabbit-holing on semantics, and frankly I don’t have much use for that, I’m not overly concerned what you choose to call something so long as at the end of the day we both understand what we’re talking about. And nothing in my original comment was contextualized by waxing poetic about labels. Which is why I don’t think you’ve approached this honestly; I don’t think you care about the conversation I’m having, I think you’re trying to get me to enter a conversation you want to have (specifically on the topic of political philosophy) by pretending that conversation is a part of mine. It isn’t, I find Alizia’s brand of philosophy particularly semantic, and I’m not going to humor you.

          As an example:

          “You outed yourself as a right-progressive even as you assert – as a means of asserting, even – your conservative bona fides.”

          This comes from us defining conservative differently. I think I can build a working definition of what you think a conservative is by piecing it together from how you talk about them, but I don’t really care. I’m using the present parlance of the term, and if that offends your sensibilities… Again… I don’t really care. At the end of the day, even if I proudly wore a nametag that said: “Jeff Talent, flaming right-progressive” it would have no outcome on my assertion. So if you or Alizia wanted to maintain your internal consistency and actually engage, you could have ad-libbed in the terms you found more appropriate and it would have changed nothing.

          And I think you knew that. In response to me saying “and what [conservatism, by your definition] is not is apparently the vast, vast majority of society, except for a couple of stalwarts who have “anchored their boats” in the past.” you said:

          “I will never be convinced to abandon a true philosophy by appeals to a “vast majority” or apparent winners or losers in global coups d’eta.”

          Which I’ll take as agreement. You seem to understand, or at least be aware of, the present parlance of these terms, how they differ from yours, and accept that you are holding out against them. In light of that… How is my use of those terms material to the conversation? Why on Earth should anyone be expected to work with your definitions, particularly in light of how you seem unable to actually define them?

          I think I’ve wasted enough ink. Engage with my points, or don’t. But I won’t respond to semantics.

  11. Benjamin wrote:

    …that this is a technique called “Whig history.” It doesn’t demonstrate a continuous growing in collective consciousness (a Marxist term, another warning) toward perfection through a process of becoming, it presupposes it even as it uses that presupposition as evidence for that presupposition. The thing presupposed simply is progressivism. It’s even the name. You outed yourself as a right-progressive even as you assert – as a means of asserting, even – your conservative bona fides. This is was what I called humorous.

    My relations to the problems you have outlined here, if I may say, and I must say since this is a discussion forum where, technically, the most important questions are supposed to be discussed, is one of general confusion. I think my problem is interesting in and of itself. And my problem is that I see reflections and traces of every corruption and *error* within myself as I see outside of myself and surrounding myself. I have gotten to the point where I can see my *complicity*, but I hover or waver in respect to the task of setting things right.

    If I may take (another) opportunity to comment in the direction of Humble Talent — since I am asked to behave in ‘good faith’ and believe I am capable of it — what I have done, which apparently disturbs him and others, is to have exposed myself to a great range of different perspectives on this dynamic question that Benjamin has asked below: “What is ‘man’ and how does he flourish?” The ultimate philosophical question is “What is this place in which we find ourselves?” and “What am I to do while here?” and the question about flourishing is essentially of the same kind.

    I profoundly dis-believe and dis-trust the people and the powers that rule the present, indeed I see it as a régime. And this means that I am faced with the problem — a real one — that ‘everyone appears to be lying’ and they seem to want to drag me into their lies. But how shall I *see* and how shall I describe this régime? Perhaps it is childish of me, or too simplified, but I am inclined to agree with E Michael Jones when he refer to machinations of political control grounded in the most cynical manipulation of man. Libido Dominandi.

    If I have studied so-called ‘fascist thought’ it is for this reason: I think that a rigorous spiritual and moral path in relation to oneself, in relation to one’s wayward desires and tendencies, is (as I understand it) a form of ‘self-fascism’. What I mean by that is that if the intellect is really empowered and shall we say illumined, it demands that the unruly and disunited forces of the self come under its rulership and control. This is a Thomist idea. We live in a ‘disordered time’ when such links between intellect and *the body* so to speak have been severed.

    As one studies the European Interwar Period one quickly notices that in times of desperation people tried to assemble ideas and doctrines that could be employed as shields and ‘anchors’ amid the shifting sands of social and political reality. On one side there was bearing down Communism and those forms of totalitarianism. And people struggled to come up with alternatives or some sort of social and intellectual bulwark. When one is confronted with powerful transformative currents (Communism had this power) one is forced to drill down into oneself, into one’s self, into one’s traditions, into one’s metaphysics, for a ‘solid answer’. So, in one sense, and one sense alone, I see the attraction of ‘fascism’ in this light.

    There is a whole range of questions that have to be asked about what ‘America’ is now and where it stands in relation to the spiritual human project. And that is a wide — and difficult — topic.

    And I can understand, therefore, why people like Lana Lokteff and her husband Henrik Palmgren have opened their doors, so to speak, to considering an extremely wide group of countervailing ideas: countervailing to this absurd ‘clown’ present and one that I call Hyper-Liberal. What amazes and impresses me is to see their growth over time: from people interested in esoteric phenomena and ‘woo-woo’ to developing into dedicated proponents of essential European categories and to understanding and exposing the destructive powers that operate openly in this present.

    So, Red Ice is one source but so is Counter-Currents. I am simply amazed that these sources exist. (And it was on Red Ice that I first encountered E Michael Jones, and Lana and Henrik are definitely not Catholics, yet they give him a platform). Not surprising that *they* desire to shut them down (and they would if they could).

    There are tens of thousands — hundreds of thousands, and millions — of people who are asking difficult questions about our present and the forces that operate in it. Just as people on this blog are noticing, with some horror I must add, that these Progressives show some tendencies toward dangerous madness, so many many people are looking around for interpretive tools and, as I say often, sound metaphysical bases on which to ground themselves in a machinating present that they reject in many ways (and for good reasons).

    My own struggle, as it seems to be, is between my grounding of-a-sort (poorly grounded really) in traditional Catholic categories and my tendency to waver. But it is only fair and honest if I say that I have also been drawn to the Germanic-romantic redefinitions of Christianity. This is basically what Luther is about: defining a Germanic Christ and developing a rebellious position to Roman Catholicism and some of its absurdities and excesses. CG Jung, who influenced me a great deal, is the quintessential German Romantic and he came out of the Germanic movement that defined an Aryan Christ.

    How to reconcile these things?

    This is deep, psychological territory and it is ‘dangerous’ territory. But it is simply one half of who I am. somatically and psychologically speaking. I have also been very influenced by Nietzsche, and in Nietzsche’s revelation about our predicament and conflict I find that our larger problems have been defined. We are well within those problems, even of we do not understand them.

    What this means, for me, and really for many of *us* [the Dissident Right], is that we are looking for ways to define and protect ‘Europe’. It must be put in quotes to indicate its romantic content, but also kept out of quotes to indicate a ‘real thing’. It is an ideal and it is a real thing. A thing that exists not (only) in ‘romantic imagination’ but in real space and time. Europe is under assault and the question is How will it defend itself? And these questions have to do with essential questions of Power. I wonder how many people — of those who bother to read what I write — understand what I am talking about?

    • When I joined on this blog — over 5 years ago — I said that my purpose was to ‘explain’ the developing Alt-Right which is now defining itself as Dissident Right. I said, and I still think, that even if one disagreed largely or completely with Dissident Right ideas that being exposed to them, understanding them, could be a useful undertaking. Even if the object is only to ‘know one’s enemies’. The reason I take this position is because my relationship to these political and social questions is mainly philosophical and theoretical. I am interested in political theory but mostly as it dovetails with my existential and my religious concerns.

      I also said that ‘Are ideas are valid’ and ‘We are here to stay’. And I was aware that I was like Cassandra of Ancient Greek fame because ‘no one believed me’. In fact all I got for a long time is ridicule, belittlement and contempt which I accept because these are very difficult themes.

      However, what I said then has proven to be accurate and true. Our ideas are gaining ground. Why? Because they are rational, soundly based and have a base in the truth. I will not say that all parts of it are such, but a good part is.

      I want to make reference to an opinion piece in today’s NYSlimes by Farhad Manjoo with the title: “I tried to imagine a president worse than Trump. Welcome to my nightmare” in which he disassembles Tucker Carlson (who really does say some startling things on his show).

      In the video attached to the article — I find this amazing — he and they are now beginning to indicate who their real enemies are, and among them are Lana Lokteff, Jared Taylor and other ‘notorious’ figures — including David Duke!

      You need no other ’emblem of evil’ but the face of David Duke.

      It is really quite germane therefore to some of the comments that Humble Talent has made, and this must mean that these are concerns that he has about what he sees as ‘radical ideas’ that are coming out into the open, those he defines as supremacist and racist.

      What I want to point out is that *they* are beginning to narrow-in on their ideological enemies, to name them in a periodical with world-distribution. The ‘System’ has taken notice, the System is concerned, the System really does not want these ideas to be shared, talked over, struggled over, and the System shows itself as capable of shutting them down as it has to hundreds of YouTube channels, as well as a wide-ranging demonetizing campaign so that their enemies can’t get funds because CC companies won’t process payments.

      You must understand that the next step is intervention by security and intelligence forces (para-militaries is the term I use). What is taking shape is what I think Lippmann called a ‘crisis of democracy’. A crisis of democracy is something that must be, and has in the past, been overcome. And in respect to this I suggest paying attention to the machinations of media and how *they* will now — how they are now — framing their counter-assault.

      It is a pretty interesting juncture within American (and world) politics no matter how one interprets it! Did anyone ever think that The Culture Wars would flower into all this?

      Are these, or are these not, highly relevant to the topic of ethics?

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