Open Forum!

Cognitive Dissonance-SMALL

Me, I’m obsessed with fighting the cognitive dissonance scale and ugly schadenfreude, thanks to a celebrity I thoroughly detest being (apparently) innocently involved in a tragedy right out of a “Murder She Wrote” plot.

You, however, can be obsessed here and now abut whatever you choose, as long as it involves ethics, and as long as you don’t express yourself like Alec Baldwin, the poor bastard.

40 thoughts on “Open Forum!

  1. I repeat this comment I made on the Superman post.

    “Climate justice”


    Who has ever heard of quantum mechanics justice?

    Or evolution justice?

    Or string theory justice?

    Or Fermat’s Last Theorem justice?

    Why were there never any school strikes for Fermat’s Last Theorem?

    It is almost as if climate “science” is not science at all.

  2. Alec Baldwin?

    Yeah, I don’t know that I ever really take joy in the misfortunes of others.

    As big of a jerk that he is, I still feel sorry for him.

    As far as I can tell, this was just a horrible accident.


    • From what I read, the directors wanted to redo a take on the project and Baldwin joked about shooting them, and proceeded to shoot them, killing one and critically injuring the other. From our gun safety courses, my wife, our son, and I were instructed to presume and assume that every fire arm was always loaded, all the time, and never point the thing at anyone unless we are ready, willing, and able to fire it. That seems to be sound advice.


  3. About Alec Baldwin: The standards for prop guns must have been relaxed at some point – I once read that prop guns had to have the barrels plugged so that even packing from a blank couldn’t exit the barrel. They don’t even need blanks with today’s technology; they could just integrate / add the sounds in later. Something seems awry here.

      • I feel sorry for the people killed and injured and their family and friends. I hope this isn’t made all about Alec Baldwin’s grief. Do actors ever have any real feelings? This is a guy who made his fortune playing an asshole.

      • In one previous instance, it was just a blank, but he put the gun against his head and the force of just the gunpowder in the blank pushed his skull into his head. In another (Brandon Lee) I believe they had prop rounds with no gunpowder, but didn’t remove the primers. The force of the primer caused a bullet to end up stuck in the barrel. When they switched to blanks, they didn’t check the gun and the blank round had enough force to dislodge the bullet and fire it out of the gun. So both prior cases didn’t have fully live ammo. I suspect this may have been some similar careless mistake.

        • The guy killing himself with a blank is an understandable, if stupid, mistake. The Brandon Lee case makes my point, I think. Leaving live primers in is asking for trouble. Yes, that was a one-in-a-million series of events, but since there is no legitimate reason for leaving the primers intact, it should not have occurred.

          Dummy rounds that look like real ammo are easy to make and are completely inert. The only cartridges capable of igniting on a movie set (an environment that necessarily requires breaking the four rules of gun safety) should be blanks, which are unmistakable in appearance.

          It turns out that the head armorer on this movie was a young (24 years old) woman who had expressed trepidation about taking the job initially, as she wasn’t sure she was ready for the responsibility. You’re probably right, that this was a careless mistake or series of them, especially if the armorer herself wasn’t sure she was up to the task.

  4. I don’t think this topic has been brought up here, and I haven’t been more outraged about anything in years.

    A genderfluid boy raped a girl in a school bathroom, the father was called in and told that the school wanted to deal with it “in house”. The father went ballistic, the school called the police to pick up the father who instead talked the cops into driving them to a hospital to administer a rape kit, which was done. The schoolboard at a public meeting on transgender policies responded to questions about whether sexual assaults had ever happened in an LCPS division bathroom and they responded that it hadn’t. The father stood up and related the story of his daughter. He was called a liar. He went ballistic again, police removed him. Meanwhile, the boy who had raped his daughter had been transferred to a different school, where he raped another girl.

    • As a general rule, I tend to think that the hyperventilation on either side should be ignored, so when I heard about this story, I was suspicious. It turns out that it is every bit as awful as I initially read. (I wasn’t sure if the boy raped another girl before [at a previous school] or after this incident [at a later school when he was kicked out of this girl’s school]. I have heard both from the reports I have seen and read.) Either way, the LCSB’s response has been unethical and negligent at best, and willful and intentional disregard of the rights of girls within its charge at worst. Yet, the same bureaucrats dismissing this incident are the one making curriculum decisions.

      A few months back, Rep. Ilhan Omar declared that there is not enough money available to fix the rot within the police departments nationwide and the best solution is to throw the system out and start over again. I wonder: why she doesn’t have the same thoughts about public education? The results we get from the public schools is horrible – a high percentage of students can’t read at grade level and are not proficient enough to pass standard/basic skill tests in math, science, or reading comprehension, and many do not have the basic study skills necessary to succeed in the real world. So, why not just throw out the whole system and start over? I mean, how many decades has this been a problem and why haven’t the gobs and gobs of money spent . . . erm, invested . . . in public education solved the problem?


      • the gobs and gobs of money spent . . . erm, invested . . . in public education”

        Perhaps the verb you’re looking for is “pissed away”.

    • Not only is this story every bit as abhorrent as you have described, but the national school board association who wrote President Biden to sic the FBI on parents as domestic terrorists used this incident as one of their primary pieces of evidence.

      Last I heard, the superintendent was still there, but I believe one of the Louden County school board members has resigned.

      There is possibly a silver lining, though. I believe this was one of the issues that prompted Terry McAuliffe to make that gaffe in the gubernatorial debate. If Youngkin does actually win the election — and it appears he has a chance — that is going to be a huge shock to the Democratic party.

      The narrative has been that Virginia has been getting steadily bluer and that was inevitable.

      Of course, the narrative after 2008 was that the Republican party had been forever marginalized, and they would never be able to win a national election again. That went well for them, eh?

      • Zeigler is apparently too busy deleting his social media accounts to have resigned just yet, but like I said in the post, the people in that school district are VERY active right now and I think his days are numbered.

    • For the longest time LGBT advocates said this would never happen, never COULD happen, and anyone who said it could happen was a transphobe, a fearmonger, and a hater. Now it DID happen, twice, and their first response is to bury it and pretend it didn’t happen. This ranks right up there with the Men in Black coming knocking on your door and telling you that you didn’t see what you saw, or the Soviet lies about the leader “just not feeling well at the moment.” This nation is headed toward a path where the First Amendment is going to get turned inside out and freedom of speech and the press are going to mean nothing.

      • It’s starting in the law schools. The future judges and lawyers are largely in favor of speech restrictions. They also allow ideology to dictate what is and isn’t true. The reason future lawyers and judges are in favor of speech restrictions is because millennials are in favor of them, and millennials are the future lawyers and judges.

        • “You’ve Gotta Love Millennials”

          There he sits inside your local coffee shop
          Sporting a man bun and facial hair
          Somehow he believes although he has no job
          That by his 30s he will be a millionaire

          Gotta love millennials

          Gotta love millennials

          She posts lots of selfies on her instagram
          With a quote that’s inspirational
          Hopes to change the world while wearing yoga pants
          Armed with her dreams and knowledge of essential oils

          Gotta love millennials

          Gotta love millennials

          27 years old trying to make it on their own
          Maybe start by leaving your parents’ home
          But maybe we’re just wrong, hahahaha
          Criticism isn’t easy for their ears
          They feel like they know most everything
          See they grew up with undeserved confidence
          ‘Cause they got trophies just for participating

          Gotta love millennials

          Gotta love millennials

          In a couple of years we will have to pass the torch
          In a couple of years they will be in charge
          And one will be our president, hahahaha
          Oh no…

          Gotta love millennials

          Please pray for millennials

  5. EXCELLENT synopsis, HT; the MSM treated this like a Syphilitic Leper until it could ignore it no more.

    The school board, et al, will have their @$$e$ swinging from basement beams while Smith sues the everLUVin’ $#!T out of ’em; GOOD!

  6. My second item is more of an observation – if you just watch the media, it seems like COVID is at it worst point ever and there’s questions if we should reinstitute lockdowns. However, in my state (Oklahoma) the 7-day average is about 1/3 what it was 6 weeks ago in a steady downward trend. And I’m lucky if I see one person with a mask on any given day, much less social distancing, etc. In nearby Texas, it’s down to about 1/4 what it was 6-8 weeks ago.

    My suspicion is that shrinking cases doesn’t fit with the vaccine mandate narrative. If cases are going down, maybe we don’t need to force everyone to get the shot. Come-on jack, can’t disagree with that.

    • Shadow,
      Case numbers are going to fluctuate and may increase as people begin to go about their normal routine.
      It is what happens after that matters. Unfortunately, the entrenched power structure has decided that all the doctors throughout the world who are treating patients quite successfully with a combination of usually 3-6meds are doing it wrong. They’re not, empirically speaking. Deaths and hospitalizations are the result of patients not having access to early treatment by badass renegade docs who aren’t willing to sit back and watch patients decompensate for a couple weeks until they’re circling the drain and only then do they go to the hospital.

      • In Oklahoma, things have been back to normal for 6+ months and people have been “back to their routine” since the end of spring. Walmart and high school football games have been busy as ever. There was a rise due to delta, but it has been steadily decreasing for 6-8 weeks, so there isn’t really any fluctuation, just case numbers going down. The vaccination rate has only gone from something like 45% to 49% during that time, so the vaccine didn’t cause the drop. Yet the government and media says the only way this is solved is with the vaccine (for the record, I and my wife are vaccinated, it our elementary age kids are not).

    • Your logic is sound, but whether cases are going down or up, a vaccine mandate won’t change much. As long as the vaccines are of little use in stopping infection and transmission, even a 100% vaccination rate wouldn’t stop the seasonal rise and fall of the virus. Cases are likely falling in the south because the weather is finally cooling off and folks are spending more time outside. Meanwhile, cases are beginning to climb in the north, as cold weather starts moving people indoors again. The daily case counts in Vermont and Maine are higher than they were at this time last year (when the number of vaccinated people was zero), and those places have nearly 90% vaccination rates among the adult population.

      In fact, there is some evidence that, by making more cases milder, these vaccines actually increase transmission by people who think “oh, it’s just allergies” (because they’ve been trained to think COVID is the bubonic plague, smallpox, and ebola all wrapped in one, so if they had it, they’d be near death), and go about their business unknowingly sharing it with everyone they meet.

      Mandate or not, we’re not going to vaccinate this thing away, at least not with these “leaky” vaccines.

    • I have been keeping my eye on a Covid tracker (by the NYT interesting) that lets you look at the trends by state as well as nationally. Don’t know anything about their methodology but the trend lines are unmistakable.

      The 7 day average for the U.S. for new cases peaked somewhere around Labor Day and is now down 50-60%. Looking at Southern states, the peak was typically in August and new cases basically fell off a cliff since — in Florida, for example they’re down about 90% from the peak. Northern states started going up after Southern states but are mostly coming down as well, although not as drastically as the Southern states (but I wouldn’t be surprised if they look that way in another month). Heavily vaccinated New England is perhaps the one region the case counts are still ticking up or remaining steady.

      I have to say that one program I listen to broadly predicted this trend. Their reasoning is that a) The biggest spreads are going to be from indoor gatherings, b) The summer heat in the South tends to drive folks indoors where it’s air conditioned, and c) Cooler fall temperatures in the North will start to send people indoor.

      Your guess is as good as mine, but that’s a reasonable theory — and they made it back in mid-summer when we were first seeing the increased caseloads.

  7. I’m late to the ball here. But here’s where we start:

    Now, this is a nearly perfect ad. Nearly Superbowl worthy, in fact. I’ve seen it about six times, in passing, and thought the following:

    “Writing? Check. Performance of actors? Spot on. Music? Moving and timeless. Technical direction? As good as it gets. Voiceover? Flawless.”

    But I just saw something I hadn’t noticed before: at the close, I saw this big chiron – a superimposed text onscreen – insisting FOR ALL SKIN TONES.”

    The family in the spot is black. Or Black, if you prefer. In the linked version, you’ll see that the chiron is more subtle than what I just saw on broadcast. The linked version is bad enough. The new cut beats you over the head.

    This angers me more than you can imagine. The ad is nearly perfect – a beautiful, warm, lovely story, gentle, and if left to its own devices it should sell a boatload of product.

    But no. Google had to make it woke. And when it wasn’t woke enough, it had to beat people over the head with it, the fuckers.

  8. Do you all remember reading about the North Carolina Democrats attempt to overturn constitutional amendments that were passed a couple years ago, with significant majorities. One was the amendment allowing voter id, that was approved by the voters but has been tied up in the courts.

    Well, last November, NC Republicans nearly made a sweep of the state wide races, aside from re-electing Governor Cooper. The elected two new Supreme Court justices, both Republicans, one of whom is the Chief Justice, narrowing the Democratic majority on the Supreme Court to 4-3.

    The voter id case is now coming to the NC Supreme Court, which will likely be the final arbiter. So what some of the Democrats are proposing is to have the Court vote to forcibly recuse those two new Justices just for the two cases regarding the constitutional amendments. The Carolina Journal broke this story and the WSJ ran an editorial condemning this move. It’s something that has never been done in North Carolina history.

    Well, there’s an interesting new twist to this story, also from the Carolina Journal. The Republicans have hefty majorities in both houses of the legislature, although not quite enough for a super-majority (let alone two-thirds). Well, something that’s being floated in the NC House is the idea that if the Court goes ahead with this involuntary recusal of the two Republican justices — the NC House could retaliate by impeaching the Democratic justices on the Court.

    They couldn’t be convicted and removed (the Republicans have just under 60% in the Senate), but there is an interesting twist to NC impeachment protocols. To wit, anyone who is impeached is suspended from his or her office until acquitted. This is also something that’s never been done.

    I really hope the threat of impeachment moves this to a standoff where nothing is done. Both actions, I think, are terrible ideas and bad precedents.

    This would be akin to the nuclear option in the U.S. Senate removing the filibuster for judicial nominees. Democrats have a tendency to do these sorts of things and never consider that they will be used against them when the shoe is on the other foot.

    We’ll see what happens next — here’s the latest story:

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