Saturday, February 25, 2017

I believe children are the dystopian future



"We need to be allies to children. Children do not have the capacity to articulate their feelings, they do not have power over their own beings to come to the rallies...they are not in control of their own destiny. They need to see you, transgender children need to see you, transgender children, even those who are not out yet, need to see you, they need to know that you are there and that you will fight for them and that they can talk to you. Immigrant children, and children, I work with children, I work with children who are homeless in the city, I work with children who face food insecurity in the city, I work with children who come up to me every day and tell me they're hungry, I work with children who do not have a bed to sleep in at night and it is the last goddamn thing that breaks my heart that the one thing in this world that keeps these children going, their parents, they now fear will go away." 
The above is from a vigil the day after Donald Trump's election at Portland's downtown riverfront park. Children as political allies is somehow not controversial, at least where the epic struggle for bathroom equality is concerned.



The swiftness with which children have become props in the transgender rights movement demonstrates how little resistance there is, still, to cultural Marxism. Concern for children, real, feigned or imagined, naturally finds its way to the forefront of social manias such as the transgender fad we're experiencing now. It recalls the the satanic abuse panic of the late eighties/early nineties that reached its nadir with the McMartin Preschool trial. But in that earlier case concern for children was the catalyst; now it the putative concern for children comes not as a catalyst but as one component, of questionable validity, of a movement dominated and driven by grown men carving out their own grievance identity.

The trans movement's conspicuous concern for children seems of a different order than the earnest if naive parents and police who--perhaps sublimating broader, and I think legitimate, fears about children and modern decadence--were led to believe in a vast network of satanic cults operating out of America's preschools (whatever Pizzagate is, and it does look at the least bizarre, it probably doesn't lead to your neighborhood daycare), but, to the naive who actually think they're protecting trans children against some onslaught, perhaps it's no different.

Now that generation of kids who were the subject of their parents' coddling and concern in the eighties and nineties--coddling that did nothing, by the way, to halt our slide into decadence--are parents. The social milieu of the post sexual revolution has beaten out of them, as much as it can, any residual traditional morality or resistance to the miasma of popular culture that exists today (google searching the literature on moral panics yields an entire literature devoted to ascribing all of it to moral paranoia of the sexually hung-up in outdated Kinsey-ian thought-language) with the time-tested tools of ridicule and pseudo-scholarship. This started long before Reagan, whose election was in some part a reaction to social decay and as we see now did nothing to slow, much less arrest, its progress.

But you can't obliterate human nature; there's probably a genetic, biological component to a parent's concern for the moral behavior of children. Why would biology program us, amidst all this biological yearning to pass on genes, to be indifferent toward whether or not our daughters are sluts and our sons are gay? Where does a parent now, surrounded by propaganda demanding that feeling in his gut at the sight of psychological disorder is just his own psychological disorder? For the most part he smiles and pretends that nothing is wrong, all the while hoping it will not touch him, not touch his family, and that his children will be more or less "normal"--most people still are, after all--and, maybe even bear him healthy grandchildren.

But what do you do when the only place to sublimate your fear of a thing is in the service of that thing?

Friday, February 24, 2017


 Tomoki Martens plays the violin across from the downtown library in Portland Oregon.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Portland

Police will only say robbery suspect Quanice Hayes had a replica gun on him when he was shot three times and killed earlier this month. A grand jury gets another two weeks to decide. This protest was on the 16th.

Nature, Nurture, Nihilism

From early in the second volume of Karl Ove Knausgaard's real-time memoir-novel My Struggle:
"...somewhere about Bergman claiming that he would have been Bergman irrespective of where he had grown up, implying, in other words, that you are whoever you are whatever your surroundings. What shapes you is how you are toward your family rather than the family itself. When I was growing up I was taught to look for the explanation of all human qualities, actions, and phenomena in the environment in which they originated. Biological or genetic determinants, the givens, that is, barely existed as an option, and when they did they were viewed with suspicion. Such an attitude can at first sight appear humanistic, inasmuch as it is intimately bound up with the notion that all people are equal, but upon closer examination it could just as well be an expression of a mechanistic attitude to man, who, born empty, allows his life to be shaped by his surroundings. 
For a long time I took a purely theoretical standpoint on the issue, which is actually so fundamental that it can be used as a springboard for any debate--if environment is the operative factor, for example, if man at the outset is both equal and shape-able and the good man can be shaped by engineering his surroundings, hence my parents' generation's belief in the state, the education system and politics, hence their desire to reject everything that had been, and hence their new truth, which is not found within man's inner being, in his detached uniqueness, but on the contrary in areas external to his intrinsic self, in the universal and collective, perhaps expressed in its clearest form by Dag Solstad, who has always been the chronicler of his age, in a text from 1969 containing his famous statement "We won't give the coffee pot wings": out with spirituality, out with feeling, in with a new materialism, but it never struck them that the same attitude could lie behind the demolition of old parts of town to make way for roads and parking lots, which naturally the intellectual Left opposed, and perhaps it has not been possible to be aware of this until now, when the link between the idea of equality and capitalism, the welfare state and liberalism, Marxist materialism and the consumer society is obvious because the biggest equality creator of all is money, it levels all differences, money is the most natural shaper, and this gives rise to the fascination phenomenon whereby crowds of people assert their individuality and originality by shopping in an identical way while those who once ushered all this in with their affirmation of equality, their emphasis on material values and belief in change, are now inveighing against their own handiwork, which they believe the enemy created,  but like all simple reasoning this is not wholly true either, life is not a mathematical quantity, it has no theory, only practice, and though it is tempting to understand a generation's radical rethink of society as being based on its view of the relationship between heredity and environment, this temptation is literary and consists more in the pleasure of speculating, that is, of weaving one's thoughts through the most disparate areas of human activity, than in the pleasure of proclaiming the truth... 
It is not the case that we are born equal and that the conditions of life make our lives unequal, it is the opposite, we are born unequal, and the conditions of life make our lives more equal. 
A dimmer view is that now we are born unequal and the conditions of life make our lives more unequal. Laissez faire culture, like a laissez faire economy, magnifies inequality by removing barriers. Society is defined by barriers. Society, in one form or other, persists wherever there is more than one of us. If our whole system of law and custom vanished today a whole new regime would spring up, in all likelihood crueler and vastly more limiting. True chaos among people hasn't time to form before the strong impose their will.

Montaigne's On Vanity:
"...human society holds and is knit together at any cost whatever. Whatever position you set men in, they pile up and arrange themselves by moving and crowding together, just as dissimilar objects, put in a bag without order, find of themselves a way to unite and fall into place together, often better than they could have been arranged by art. King Philip collected a rabble of the most wicked and incorrigible men he could find, and settled them all in a city he had built for them, which bore their name. I judge that from their very vices they formed a political system among themselves and a workable and regular society.
Society is defined by the limits it places on us. We carry on as if we're arguing over the nature of the world, as if upon answering that question definitively all would fall into place, when all contention is really about what kind of world we want to live in. What kind of world should we strain to produce.
Over the nature and extent of the restraints we will place on ourselves. Until technology's grim promise of liberation from society and its constraints comes to fruition by leaving us universally atomized (and still not free, or with the dread awareness freedom without community is not all it's cracked up to be), this fight will go on. But a prejudice against rules leaves us with the misconception that the fewer the rules the freer the world.

Money is both a great equalizer and de-equalizer: with its acquisition the able, or at least cunning, man can level traditional barriers of class and possibility, but this process has left us more stratified than ever by wealth--and the liberty wealth buys. We have now, with the "one percent" a class of the transcendentally wealthy. Knausgaard's point about money above is that money allows us all to buy into a cultural equality. Money is liberty, in that sense, and it's a liberty we use to purchase a mediocre conformity.

 Liberty is the greatest de-equalizer of all: just for one example, freed of restraints of morality and marriage, the sexual landscape is shifting to one where alpha males monopolize women (made more submissive in their sexual liberation) and betas retreat to internet porn and video games. And liberty is also an equalizer in Knausgaard's sense that money is: witness how much those who see themselves expressing their individuality with tattoos and piercings become part of one gloomy mass, indistinguishable.

The relative immutability of our genetic nature--in which I believe--does not mean necessarily that Knausgaard's Bergman would have been Bergman wherever he had grown up. Bergman, more to the point the life-expression of Bergman with which we are concerned, his work, would have had to take the course determined by the limitations of his environment. Bergman born before film would be a very different Bergman, obviously, but there are countless other variations that might have been imposed by a different social environment. And it isn't just the great artists whose success we would have lost to an alternate world, it's the "great" artists, liberated and empowered in the world we have, that we could have been spared: would the lack of a thousand contemptuous, spitting rappers be truly a lack?

In this world of confusion--not just about the unequal weight of heredity and environment but about what it means--we have the absurdity of the anti-Trump resistance, funded by global capitalists, working through the CIA, preaching democracy while pulling out all the stops to subvert it. And it isn't clear that even those at the highest levels, orchestrating it all, are aware of the contradiction.

Society is going to bend us to its will, one way or the other. Our angst is the strain between our "natural" selves and our selves that society demands of us. We all seek to escape or lessen that strain however we can, without knowing it.

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Reality's Trump-et

Is this Washington Post article trying to imply Donald Trump's recent comments on Sweden's Muslim problem provoked Muslim rioting afterwards?
Just two days after President Trump provoked widespread consternation by seeming to imply, incorrectly, that immigrants had perpetrated a recent spate of violence in Sweden, riots broke out in a predominantly immigrant neighborhood in the northern suburbs of Sweden's capital, Stockholm.
It's unlikely the Post writer's opening with "[j]ust two days after" is an affirmation of Trump's larger point after all. Would that it were. I wonder if he considered just how much better it works as such. I've given up hope on his ilk recognizing how absurd their defenses have become: we're to believe that Sweden's Muslims being provoked to riot over the gaffe of a US president--despite Sweden's own establishment coming so quickly their defense--isn't in itself cause for alarm. They've been spinning so long they don't know whether they're coming or going.

I don't think Trump is playing "4-D chess" with the opposition, beyond placing himself in position to get lucky by being right on the larger point--here, Muslim immigration degrading Europe--while being imprecise enough to leave himself open to "fact checking" and spin that has to wrestle openly with that broader point and wither under the inevitable dramatic refutation such as Sweden's most recent Muslim rioting.
Because Trump is right about an ongoing catastrophe the opposition press renders itself plausibly accurate and comically irrelevant (here, nothing major or dramatic happened "last night in Sweden", but just wait a couple of days). Trump isn't playing the opposition press, reality is.

As for "widespread consternation", in the US it's no wider than the Acela corridor. In Sweden, if the Post's somewhat cravenly implication is to be taken seriously, "consternation", for Sweden's Muslims, is expressed by burning cars, attacking police and general rioting. The source of their consternation leading to "bouts of anger" (phrasing designed to prevent further consternation, perhaps) can be attributed to that universal constant, the inadequacy of the host population to integrate newcomers.

At the very least these efforts to refute by pointing out an irrelevant lack of precision force the opposition press to expose that which it would rather leave completely in the dark. Optimal for them would be complete ignorance; the mere act of "fact checking" Trump's latest constitutes a severe degradation of their position. Emphasis added below:
The neighborhood, Rinkeby, was the scene of riots in 2010 and 2013, too. And in most ways, what happened late Monday night was reminiscent of those earlier bouts of anger. Swedish police apparently made an arrest around 8 p.m. near the Rinkeby station. For reasons not yet disclosed by the police, word of the arrest prompted a crowd of youths to gather.
In 2015, when the influx of refugees and migrants to Europe from Africa, the Middle East and Asia was highest, Sweden took in the greatest number
per capita. By and large, integration has been a success story there, save for incidents such as Monday night's, which have taken place in highly segregated neighborhoods.
Integration has been successful except where it isn't (here, and there, and over there...) and where there is segregation which is all over (notice how assimilation isn't even mentioned any more--that failure is no longer even recognized as such--you're a racist for even thinking it's a failure). It's gotten so they can't even get out a coherent sentence. "Protests were peaceful until some started rioting" is the template.
Trump is Br'er Rabbit, reality is the briar patch.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Pirating Social Justice

When I first saw this quoted on Twitter I assumed it was satire--someone had simply substituted "Chinese" for "White".


One reason for that is I've found myself making this argument to SJW friends and family: "this white privilege business is silly. Go to China and you won't see people arguing about 'Han Chinese privilege'." Well, almost there.

It turns out Ms. Thanapal is in fact an activist in Singapore (Muslim Malay, I think).  Here she is teasing out of a Singaporean official's sympathetic remarks the stuff of narrative outrage in language we'll all find familiar:
 When Mr Shanmugam first posted about Ms Thanapal's remarks, he said the point he actually made at the event was that the Malaysian education system was not good for integration. 
"The Chinese leadership in various local areas in Malaysia want to maintain control over the Chinese population. It suits them to have Chinese students go to Chinese schools instead of mainstream Malaysian schools. And the schools are more Chinese (because they are effectively single race)," he wrote. 
 "At the same time, many mainstream schools in Malaysia are becoming more Malay (because the students are largely Malay) and Islamic (e.g. through the way some principals and teachers handle matters) which discourages the Chinese from going into those schools. So you end up with having more Malays going to mainstream schools, and more Chinese going to Chinese schools. As a result, the different races are kept apart from a young age." 
Ms Thanapal's Facebook post appeared to take issue with Mr Shanmugam saying that mainstream schools in Malaysia were "becoming more Malay and Islamic".
 She wrote: "The only reason you would consider this important enough to make statements about, is if you are an Islamaphobic bigot who thinks Malay-Muslims are a threat."
And here she is hitting all the right notes in Chinese Privilege, Gender and Intersectionality in Singapore
Chinese privilege in Singapore is unique because it occurs outside of mainland China and territories which it has historically controlled. In this manner, our interview is intended as the beginning of an examination of a larger Chinese privilege, with its own histories of colonialism and migratory communities. We note that in order to zero in on the current racial and political structures in Singapore, as well as specifically on the complex role of gender, our interview does not focus on the historical development of this privilege per se, or on the obviously important, historically motivated distinctions between different groups of Chinese in Singapore. In the nineteenth century, under British colonialism, southern Chinese immigrated from China to Singapore and Malaysia to escape famine and the effects of the Opium Wars back home, and arrived to a colony in which they were brutally subjugated: the majority of male Chinese immigrants experienced great abuse under a system of indentured labor (the “coolie” system), and many of the (comparatively few) female immigrants were forced into prostitution. While this interview is intended to open up a conversation about monolithic Singaporean Chinese privilege today, we plan a more comprehensive critical historical genealogy of comparative Chinese privilege in our future work in order to elaborate upon these distinctions and developments.
Somehow I don't think the Chinese will endure much of this sort of thing in the Mainland, but one can hope.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

The Soulless Statistician

Business Insider derides Americans' fear of terrorism:

"I once asked a guy at [the National Institutes of Health] how much we should spend on preventing a disease that kills 6 per year, and he looked at me like I was crazy," John Mueller, a foreign policy expert at the Ohio State University and co-author of the book "Chasing Ghosts: The Policing of Terrorism", told Business Insider in an email.

It has become a commonplace to argue against any critique of immigration or the refugee racket by ranking the risk of dying in a terror attack against other causes of death, from traffic accidents to street crime to shark attacks. Of course the threat to the individual is slight in a nation of  over 300 million without Muslim communities of the proportional size, poverty and radicalism of such as Europe's Muslim communities. Though, come to think of it, you could probably show similar disparities between terror and other causes of death in Europe--does that mean Europe doesn't have a terrorism problem? The point of terror is to terrorize, not to win by attrition.

All deaths are not equal. The death due to terrorism exists in a sort of causal chain of effort; each is a brick in a wall the enemy is trying to build. Each death advances a cause. The ocean isn't conspiring against us, and if we're flooded it's either Nature's indifference or God's wrath--and the statisticians will probably snark at us for fearing these as well. Every death encourages our enemy and sustains his effort at the same time it demoralizes and terrorizes us.

A total of three people were killed in the Boston Marathon Bombing. Does that mean it should rank lower among our concerns than a plane crash killing dozens? Does that make the moral culpability of the terrorists less than that of a madman run amok? Are these murders of no different quality than that committed by a 70-IQ street criminal acting on a whim? Was the expense and disruption of the city-wide lock-down to find the surviving Tsarnaev brother a massive waste of resources that could have been better spent on improved crosswalks or AIDS education? Aside from his likelihood to kill again (which statistics might show to be low) what was the purpose of bringing him to justice? What is justice, if a death by falling drunk into a well is no more tragic than a boy mangled by a terrorist's bomb?

We all know we're taking our chances driving. We all know we'll eventually get sick and die. We know there's a certain risk to swimming in the ocean. But these are not outrages. They are not perpetuated upon us by people advancing a cause (something we seem to have forgotten how to do ourselves); they do not exist in a web of purpose. If we eliminate both morality and our communal point of view--our identity, as Americans--then the statisticians are right, and the State's only role here is to limit total deaths by proper allocation of resources. Is it?

It is our right to defend ourselves. Americans murdered by an enemy, however small and ineffectual he may be--and I find it entirely plausible that this is true--are our responsibility beyond the mere optimization of life outcomes.

Our own ethnic masochism and the ethnic hostility of some among us, operating under the veil of moral universalism (which would be unsustainable even if it didn't translate in practice into a bias for the Other against our own) has robbed us of the right to speak of (and even the ability to think) of ourselves as a coherent us. The victim of terrorism is one of us murdered by one of them. 

But the real thing is we don't have a terrorism problem; we have a Muslim problem. Most of us who are most enthusiastic about rolling back the refugee program don't want growing Muslim communities in our country because we know it will contribute to our destruction in other ways, by dividing us further into a nightmare of competing ethnic groups, by introducing values anathema to our own, by making us dumber overall, by making us boring and incapable of acting as a nation, even in our own defense. But we don't get to talk about that, so we have to focus on what is merely the worst aspect of a growing Muslim population in the West. That worst aspect speaks volumes for how bad the rest of it is--for all the horror of Bataclan and tragedy of the Eiffel Tower's walling-France's bigger problem, that to which it may succumb, is its festering Muslim-dominated banlieues. 
We're bigger and there's a great deal more ruin in our nation. We endure the tiny minority that would behead us at the first chance for the benefit of the mass of unenlightened, boring, bigoted Muslims we have now.

But as to terrorism and President Trump's so-called "Muslim Ban", there is another misconception here in the crude cost-effect analysis above. As a means of preventing terrorist attacks, it doesn't represent a sledgehammer of a solution applied to a fly of a problem. It's part of a broader effort that is largely the reason the numbers of terrorist kills in the US are so low in the first place:

It's worth pointing out that the US government's multi-billion-dollar-per-year homeland security efforts to thwart terrorism, certainly since 9/11, have ostensibly reduced American deaths and kept the odds low.

However, it's hard to say — the DHS does not publicly release data about the number of terror attack attempts per day and lives saved as a result of its efforts. The same is also true of counter-terrorist military operations. 

 But assume for a moment that one 9/11-like event killed 3,000 Americans per year, and indefinitely. While this would drastically raise the lifetime odds of death by a foreign terrorist, the typical American is still far more likely to die walking out the door, getting into a car, jumping into a pool, or simply standing up. 

 Mueller and his colleague Mark G. Stewart explored the costs and benefits of fighting terrorism for the Cato Institute in a September 2014 study. That report states:
 "[T]he United States spends about $100 billion per year seeking to deter, disrupt, or protect against domestic terrorism. If each saved life is valued at $14 million, it would be necessary for the counterterrorism measures to prevent or protect against between 6,000 and 7,000 terrorism deaths in the country each year, or twice that if the lower figure of $7 million for a saved life is applied."
Assuming the 2010 terrorist attack plot on Times Square was successful (the car bomb didn't go off), Mueller told Business Insider, hitting that measure would require four such attacks per day on US soil. 

As has been suggested," Mueller and Stewart wrote in their study, "terrorists scarcely seem to be numerous, competent, and dedicated enough to carry out such a task."

That last part may very well be true.

What's missing from all this is the concept of evil. I don't want to live in a world where a woman tortured to death in a nightclub in Paris is no more worth our notice than a man dying of a heart attack because after "standing up" (unfortunate choice of phrase for an argument that demands you lay down).

 Universalism first destroys the concept of "us", then it destroys us.

Friday, February 10, 2017

Diary, February 9, 2017; Bittersweet Decay

The girls from work are all young and pretty, and in various stages of wreckage. Taylor is delicately featured, pale, a classic red head except for the not quite red hair. She's done up too much, with the excessive eye liner and dark red lipstick that is a current, unfortunate fashion; it cannot overcome her natural beauty, which bleeds through with all the bloom of youth. I suggest a trace of her Indian ancestry in her high cheekbones, complimenting her, taking advantage in the presumed harmlessness of my age what I wouldn't have dared as easily as a young man, always perceived as being on the make. The worst part is I am harmless. She had been talking about a Native American great grandmother down the line, maybe I'm indulging the flattery too much there, but it's okay, she's genuinely beautiful, tragically, hopelessly beautiful, all for naught.

She's one of these girls you think don't know they're beautiful, you hope she doesn't, but she probably just isn't at peace with it; she's admirably not in control of it--despite the make-up. And all the young girls look better without the war paint; but I won't tell them. It's no use. She has no chance either way, she's too frail, too delicate; none of us do. I can see the brief grace of flowering youth just burning out of her, I can see it evaporating with the alcohol fumes in the haze of smoke and the godawful vape mist, but not dissipating, not yet, like some short-lived nuclear reactor inside is still outpacing the awful, relentless wasting away of time, burning itself out with indifferent, mystical precision.

 I can only think it is good to be young and to go any farther in trying to describe it, why it is good, or how it is good. is not just pointless but wrong somehow. At any rate I cannot bear that it will not last, and despite that something sadder still, I think, that if it did last it would no longer be good--there is nothing for it but to avoid these too melancholy reflections on it. To not look upon beauty without despair gets harder as we age and soften; it just comes through more piercingly as you near your end. Everything else fades away with you.
Youthful ardor obscures somehow, even in intimacy, just what you're up against. That too may be a necessity. But I can't help wishing we were in simpler times, and they weren't awash in options, and the boys too--that they might make honest men and women of each other. That these kids represent a generation; it's too much to bear. I don't know how we will reclaim them, but we have to, somehow, for tradition, for the future.

 I have been drinking. I rarely drink, especially now, but I can put it away like my torso is just a hollow cask; I don't know where it goes. Some of the young guys are crashed out here and there, and I just keep going. I should leave, I think, I don't belong here, but I don't want to go. I take my harmonica over by the decks--they're dj's here--and I'm playing along. It sounds amazing; I'm finding the right key by accident, somehow, maybe it's the alcohol. I don't really know how to play but I can fake it, and I'm lost in the music, and the dj approves, he likes it; it's pure joy for a while, but I won't play too long. People are watching, I'm putting on a show, it's like a fantasy I have of playing an instrument on stage--always a great music lover, never able to play a musical instrument--and it's good but I don't want to overdo it, so I don't go on too long.

And somehow I can just keep drinking. Until I wear out from exhaustion I only get more sharply gregarious, too much really. I hope I'm not boring anyone; my conversation is way over their heads, my best stuff wasted. I'm wasted. Occasionally one of the guys falls apart, trying to sound smart, or cool; they don't know how to take me. They're in worse shape than the girls, even: they have to put on a front. It's so important to be interesting; I try to make small talk and find them uneasy; they can't talk about themselves. They just fall apart trying to sound interesting. I don't care; I'm not so interested in them--I don't know how to take them. They're incapable of jesting self-deprecation. They're hopeless; there's nothing I can do for them. But the girls, they break my heart.

I'm thinking about what it means, about countless kids like this living like this--I'm a hypocrite, for I might be right there alongside them if I was young, and I mourn for my own lost decadence along with their lost innocence. But none of us know what's good for us, until it's too late.

And then it's over.

Thursday, February 09, 2017

Deluded by the Dunning-Kristol Effect

We've all seen it. Forget for the moment the nastiness of it. Consider just how insanely stupid it is, to think you're "replacing" a population--forget even the stupidity of taking no account of the quality of human capital you're using as replacements in taking Somalis and Mexicans to be mere fungible human units equal to Europeans. Forget his obliviousness to technology and automation's relentless reduction of labor and the crisis it would represent without the importation of ever more uneducated, low-IQ foreigners.

Consider that Bill Kristol seems to think the white working class simply evaporates away by the same process with which their replacements are brought in, disappearing from the scene without causing the profound social and economic shocks that go with a displaced population as it becomes more impoverished, more dependent on government, more drug-afflicted and disaffected. How long does Bill think that will take? What form does he think that will take?
It takes the form of death, despair and hopelessness, and it takes generations.

Imagine a Jew, of all people, oblivious to the connection between heredity and history, thinking that these grandchildren of the Europeans he now pretends to lionize deserve nothing of the legacy they labored and died to produce. Imagine if those European immigrants of the past--who in another context Kristol would be sure to deride in no less disdainful terms--could hear this addled, pot-bellied embodiment of mediocrity dismissing the progeny they cherished in such flippant terms.

Okay, don't forget the nastiness of it. It's hard to tell where the stupid begins and the evil ends.

But his obliviousness to the irony of his talking of regression to the mean and mediocrity while presenting the living embodiment and history of it stands out like that well-fed gut.

 

Tuesday, February 07, 2017

Despair and Decline

War with the NEETs

The assault on Richard Spencer turns out to be a watershed moment for the Trump opposition. The response from the mainstream has gone all the way from tepid, qualified disapproval to enthusiastic cheering. Then cultural figures joined in, most notably when an Emmy Awards audience applauded an award-winner's visceral call for more.



It isn't as if the violence had only just begun with the election of Trump. Organized intimidation of Trump supporters became big with its successful shutting down of a rally in Chicago and escalated to outright violence when a Trump rally in San Jose was attacked:



Isolated assaults on Trump supporters were already becoming normal, but going mostly unreported because it was mostly isolated incidents of minority assaults on whites, something the Press doesn't report as standard practice already (they should just put it explicitly in the social justice style book at this point). It also couldn't be spun through the Narrate-o-Matic as "violence breaking out at Trump rally" which, remarkably (or not so remarkably) some did with the obviously organized and one-sided attack on Trump supporters in San Jose.

But also it's still that black and brown people don't really register to a media elite dominated by Jews and Wasps still insistent on seeing the world as a battle between goodwhites and badwhites, with minorities as bit players unhindered by moral agency or responsibility.

The San Jose violence and Chicago intimidation was organized by the usual shadowy suspects, but that organization seems to have not been intended to go beyond busing the mostly black and brown thugs to the targeted venues and encouraging them to provoke Trump supporters in the hopes of producing plausible optics attesting to their inherent violence. Trump supporters actually proved stubbornly resistant to it; thus ever greater provocations, backfiring in San Jose. The Elite doesn't understand their lynch mob: California's Mexicans are among the least political and most racially territorial people alive; as a group are probably one of the few more alien to and misread by our oblivious Elite than the Trump supporters they fear in increasingly lurid fantasies.

It may be that the Chicago campaign, limited to intimidation and the threat of violence and creating the impression Trump was weak and losing was viewed as a success, while San Jose, where Trump supporters were assaulted for the world to see, was the mob getting beyond organizers' control. Still, with no real repercussions (if you don't count losing the election, but there's no evidence they're even capable of making the connection) for it, they continue even now to press on and escalate. If there's any centrality to the organized political intimidation, anyone at the helm, it was probably decided it would be better to avoid another San Jose by not busing about large groups of angry Mexicans before election day.

But the political violence that followed in Berkeley after the crowd at the Emmys applauded Richard Spencer's assault is of a different order and type. With black bloc types showing up things haven't just escalated; they've assume a new character.

Now the rioters themselves, while probably still directed, ultimately, and certainly funded by the same shadowy forces, are self-organized and disciplined. And these groups are overwhelmingly young white men, ironically evoking a trope of the alt-right: when whites are provoked to "chimp out" it can go as far as the Holocaust. And our desperate elites still haven't "provoked the Saxon" until he comes to see his elimination is their ultimate goal.

These disaffected young men are the very products of the globalization they've been pressed into obliviously defending. Their continuing allegiance in the chaos they are being manipulated into creating is by no means a given. Unlike the minority mobs and the atomized social justice head cases, they pride themselves on their independence and agency. The aspire to more. Our Elite is wielding a flame thrower they think is a fire extinguisher.

Thursday, February 02, 2017

Level 5 Peaceful Protest

I've seen it too often now, in person and online, for it not to be the result of training. I've even read someone else online (I don't recall where) attesting to the phenomenon: as soon as demonstrators engage physically with police, counter-protesters or innocent bystanders, those not in the scrum start chanting "peaceful protest." Once when they were trying to invade a downtown hotel, blocked by a cordon of police in riot gear (I later learned from hotel employees that they were trying to get at someone with a Trump hat or sign inside--presumably to trump his hate, good and hard) they started in with it--the effect was a bit sinister, as if they were deliberately taunting the cops with irony.

I'm not sure if the idea is to settle down their overexcited fellows or an attempt to frame the event as it's happening (and being recorded from multiple angles) in their favor. It appears to be the latter. There's more and more organization behind the protests, and the protesters are picking up experience and habits.
The "special snowflake" theme has to go away. There are many among them now committed to violence--there have been no consequences and the precedent has been set, with the attack on Richard Spencer, then a counter-protester knocked unconscious here in Portland, and tonight's escalation. They are in a self-control spiral, as the more zealous compete to distinguish themselves against these increasingly violent examples. The safety of the mob and delusional zealotry gives courage to many.

The "special snowflakes" thing always only went so far. These demonstrations are expressions of power, and they are intoxicating. The dimmest among the mob, and these must be many, if not the majority, may in fact think they've been powerless and oppressed all this time (ironically as a result of all the coddling they've received), and their lashing out has the energy of released frustration.
That frustration may in fact be real, just displaced. They don't know what they've been denied--family, faith, community--by modernity, technology, atomization, indoctrination--so their frustration is displaced onto these same things, which they've been trained to think of as the problem.

Movement Aesthetic and Action

Standards are necessarily discriminatory. The higher the standard, the more discriminatory. The more standards society maintains the more discriminatory that society is. The idea of discrimination is now discredited, due to the elevation of individual and minority rights. There is no morality above individual self-esteem or the group esteem of favored minorities. Standards of beauty and standards of behavior are linked. A society that will not maintain standards of beauty cannot long maintain standards of behavior.
Ugliness advances in direct proportion to behavior's decline. A society that can no longer discriminate in favor of, or aspire to, beauty can no longer discriminate in favor of the better or even the good. The lowest common denominator, already set loose by democracy and technology, rules unopposed. Ironically, standards of beauty are more crafted now, more "socially constructed" and derive less from human nature--what would have been called the soul before--than they were in less democratic, less "free" times.







Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Escalation

The proverbial shit got real when demonstraters against President Trump's "Muslim ban" shutting down Portland's airport attacked a tiny group of counter-protesters and knocked a man unconscious.

The mob was barely contained as they cheered the assault (from Infowars):



News accounts are describing the counter-demonstrators as pro-Trump but that isn't entirely accurate. This is the same group of extreme evangelists I recorded harrying anti-Trump demonstrators previously at the Inaugural Day protests in downtown Portland:

 

Somehow these guys held out for over an hour, alone amid a hostile crowd of thousands, creating a virtual blizzard of triggered snowflakes. The last time I checked on them they had been splattered with refuse and some sort of thick red liquid. The speaker here who you can't quite see looks to me to be the same guy who was knocked out.

The video above I took with my camera. These poor quality videos are converted from Periscope broadcasts I took of the same event.




Some anti-Trump protesters created a cordon around the evangelists to keep their fellows off of them. One of the evangelicals' tormentors here I think is the same protest group leader who was charged a few days ago for sex with a minor (seventeen-year old twink via grindr, it appears--he's already a registered sex offender for his juvenile record):



And this has nothing to do with any of that specifically but I thought I should inform you that democracy is now a hate crime:



I encountered a similar group outside the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, employing the same means and rhetoric:



These groups are being described as "Westboro" wherever they're encountered, but as far as I can tell they're not affiliated with the notorious Westboro Baptist Church. Their defense of Trump appears to be mostly opportunistic. The still-active original Westboros, unsurprisingly judging from their anti-Americanism and anti-militarism, actually protested Trump's inauguration.

Our local Westboros, like the guys at the RNC, seem to have seized on a qualified pro-Trump narrative as a means of provoking their primary enemy, degeneracy, so well-represented by the social justice movement.

The airport assault represents an escalation to violence the local media appears uninterested in noting.

Monday, January 30, 2017

The Waiting

One more foul emanation of enforced diversity: that morbid interval after an act of mass violence, as we two increasingly divided sides of our split nation wait to learn the identity of the culprit and where the narrative impact will land. Diversity not only divides by placing entire communities of strangers in our midst, it divides us--what's left of "us"--by forcing us to take a stand regarding them.

Still, almost no one who's chosen sides already will be swayed either way. Whoever loses the coin toss feels it as a narrative setback, a blow to morale and a lost opportunity, but rarely if ever as a challenge to his assumptions. We continue, out of habit as much as anything else, as if there's still a fight for the acquiescence of the great distracted middle of apolitical citizens, the "normies". But as our political polarization continues and the atrocities pile up--both direct results of diversity--that middle becomes both smaller and increasingly numbed to the arguments. To the extent they consider it at all they assume they live equidistant between two extremes that can be reconciled, if only the zealous on both sides would calm down, by some splitting of the difference. That things might be the Manichean struggle between good and evil that we out here on the battle lines see defies common sense--and it should, but common sense is insufficient for understanding a deliberately distorted reality.

In this circumstance it takes a greater shock to move anyone in the middle either way. But with the Establishment's control of the Megaphone there is a profound disparity in the directional effect of those shocks. Not all crimes are equal; not all victims equally wronged. Through amplification of supposed right wing extremism and suppression of even the most heinous acts of, for two instances, Muslim terrorists and black criminals, we've long been in a situation where a drunken white's "racist" rant somewhere goes viral and becomes an occasion for white self-flagellation everywhere, while the vast majority of Americans don't know about such as the Bataclan massacre, and criminally rare is he who knows of its appalling nature. And as the terrorist attacks pile up and grow in brutality, the perceptual chasm widens, because it's been decreed beforehand that an equivalence exists.

It's a scam, by which white Americans surrender our notion of "us" and "them". Rest assured, they, whoever they happen to be, have not. The effect for intellectual callow American blacks, Muslims and others of this deliberate double standard has been to strengthen their in-group identity and demonize us as a hostile out-group.

And the extreme nature of the violence is not just telling of the depths of the hate we're up against, it's an outrage we're no longer allowed. The nature of the violence is entirely relevant, but we're supposed to equate a disaffected loner shooting up a church in outrage over a nonetheless accurate notion of the state of affairs--Dylann Roof--with a police assassin wound up by fantastic tales of a "war" being waged against him by racist cops. We can prosecute and condemn Roof's actions without denying reality. I'm not sure how many more Roofs can be prevented if we continue to deny that reality and fail to deal with it. Likewise the emergence of an angry loner--such as may be responsible for the Quebec mosque massacre--does nothing to negate or justify the continuing assault on our peace and heritage that Islam represents. Neither do I equate his actions with the torture of innocents by an organized band supported by a larger religious-political movement

This is the nature of tolerance: you aren't allowed proper disgust, revulsion and outrage. Its impulse is still there, however, and it gets channeled into our own destruction; witness the zealous anger of the social justice warrior.

Where the media has no option but to cover such atrocities it hedges with irrelevant or misleading  context about how terrorists don't represent all Muslims and "right wing Christian white men" represent a greater threat. The revealing disparity in the nature of the crimes--a bullied loner shooting up a church versus the gleeful barbarity of Muslims beheading their victims--is hidden in statistics, along with the reality the Muslim terrorist represents an organized effort which "moderate" Muslims seem utterly unconcerned with, until it lands on them--in which case their efforts against it are paraded as of a piece with our own struggle, when it is not. Muslims besieged by ISIS somewhere take up a protest and it's enthusiastically picked up in the global media as evidence of their solidarity with us. But moderate Muslims needn't even oppose their extremists--all they need to do is flee them (or pretend to be fleeing them) and a new theme arises, such as when terrorist attacks in Europe are deemed to have no relevance to the present "refugee" onslaught, for these migrants are, after all, fleeing the same thing back home.
All variety of reality goes into the Narrate-o-Matic, but only Narrative-friendly gruel comes out.

But what's utterly lost is what strikes me as the worst of it: the so-called "right wing" terrorist himself, the so-called "intolerance" and bigotry are all just more results of the enforced diversity of globalization, Muslim immigration and forced integration. Inevitable, predictable, understandable even--for the apologist stands ever-ready to understand the most heinous acts of the Other or of aggrieved minorities.
In light of the barbarous nature of Muslim terror, and the profound betrayal of its apologists, from moderate Muslims to Western elites, the reaction of the "right wing" is tepid.

And it gets worse still. The default, taken-for-granted position of the apologists is that any reaction--muted as it is still in the West compared to what would be provoked anywhere else in the world to such a threat and betrayal, to such a humiliation, to such barbarity--is evidence of the necessity to continue on course with the actions producing it. To finally squelch this Orwellian-describe "prejudice" and "phobia".

Ironic Christianity

Via Steve Sailer I see a New York Times headline that would have defied understanding before the ascendance of Current Year thinking:

 

I've heard the claims that Christians are being discriminated against in the refugee racket and have no idea if it is true. The Times:
But the claim is simply untrue. In 2016, the United States admitted almost as many Christian refugees (37,521) as Muslim refugees (38,901), according to the Pew Research Center. 
Which might actually suggest a favoring of Christians over Muslims--Christians make up only five percent of Syrians, for example, according to the cited Pew article (but only one percent of refugees from there). But without the total numbers of Muslim v Christian applicants and corresponding percentages of those accepted, none of this proves anything about discrimination. And I suspect the percentage of applicants from persecuted Christian minorities far outstrips that of Muslim majority populations.
Also, asylees--those who enter the US on their own and then seek asylum--aren't counted. The Pew article doesn't give any of that detail, and the NYT is plainly uninterested, intent on spinning the story as a fact-check on Trump.

But it seems to me the salient point is the Christians are persecuted by Muslims, and the Muslims are persecuted by other Muslims (and of course Christians are far more likely to be genuinely persecuted and not economic migrants posing as refugees). Furthermore the Christians are a tiny minority, genuinely in danger of being wiped out completely--the stated intention of radical Muslims--and the prevention of genocide is supposed to be what the refugee system is for. I suspect as Assad has managed to avert losing control of Syria Christians there are less likely to apply, but Christian communities outside of Assad-controlled Syrian and throughout the Middle East are probably seeking asylum en masse.

It would just be nice to be able to trust our media regarding this. Alas. As for Trump, his championing of Christian refugees distinguishes him from the Times et al in that he seeks to restore to us a semblance of our identity--by allowing us to frankly discriminate in favor of our own, as people the world over not yet under the yoke of hostile elites still do. The Christians are better than the Muslims, they are better for us (if we're to take in anyone) and they are in an important sense, above all, us. 
Globalization is about nothing so much as denying us--historic Western peoples--our point of view, our identity, our sense of us.

Saturday, January 28, 2017

Hijab Hullabaloo

Steve Sailer has been speculating Shepard Fairey's current obsession with the hijab is something of a sexual fetish, and Fairey's choice of a beautiful woman in ruby red lipstick that might get her arrested in one of the more moderate Muslim countries certainly suggests it is, at least, for him and other young straight male social justice warriors:


But I think it emerges from a Platonic fixation on the hijab going back a few years now. As a practical matter, the hijab makes "Muslim" an immediately discernible identity for inclusion in the ubiquitous Bennetton-style imagery of the Diversity movement. Otherwise you've got an uncertain Mediterranean type who could be a mere Italian, yielding next to nothing in Diversity Pokemon points.



To find an image immediately discernible as Muslim it becomes slim pickings once you've abandoned the hijab; you're left with such as the unattractive, literally and figuratively, Angry Muslim Beard Man


whose inclusion destroys the purpose of presenting a positive, non-threatening image entirely; he's been memed so much by shitposters I couldn't even find the iconic original image of him I had in mind, without text. Fortunately the real-life Angry Muslim Beard Man has gotten around quite a bit himself--so much so I think I've seen a conspiracy theory out there purporting to out him as a Mossad agent provocateur; he's everywhere on the Internet. As for Mild Hijab Woman, she's so in demand Google images auto-completes at h.

Taken as a whole Hijab Woman is more mild-mannered in appearance than she is attractive--though she is more attractive than the real-life hijab women you see on the street, many of whom make you wonder if the full face veil option of the Burka is not solely about protecting the modesty of women but also the eyes of men



I suspect the hijab is popular precisely because it projects a comforting modesty. Hijab Woman provides a welcome, if unrecognized, mild corrective to the broader social justice movement, with its endless surfeit of gyrating gays, obese co-eds, angry androgynes in tattoos, gages, piercings and awkward, tasteless apparel.
There's probably an unease for the socially aware person whose commitment isn't derived from his own psychological issues--yes, I do believe they exist--regarding the affected decadence and endlessly varied bad taste that is increasingly dominant in the movement. Hijab Woman cleanses the palate in between doses of the tart, the bitter, the sickly-sweet.

Friday, January 27, 2017

Today in White Guilt

Another day, another ambitious Democrat abasing herself before blacks in a play for power. Sally Boynton Brown, as the nationally unknown forty year-old Democratic Party Chair from Republican Idaho, is a long, long shot candidate for national chair. Her instantly infamous cringe-video below probably isn't enough to make her a dark horse candidate (so to speak) but has raised her profile without causing her too much trouble within her dysfunctional party.



Either Keith Ellison or Thomas Perez, offering competing hues of anti-white demagogy, seem destined to be the next Democratic National Committee Chair, unless someone can do something about it without running afoul of identity politics piety. Perez has to be the establishment favorite, having more experience and connections than the callow token Ellison, without the 880-pound gorilla of Islam in his baggag. Are Hispanics already yesterday's primus inter pares minority? They failed to show up and swing the election for Hillary after all, and Muslims, by perverse virtue of the crisis Islam presents to the West and their more exotic image, seem poised to overtake them. Ellison's biggest problem after his obvious mediocrity is probably that he isn't a female in a hijab. There seems to be a sort of non-sexual fetish about the hijab, but that's a whole other subject.

Brown's comments should be seen for what they are, an attempt by an ambitious newcomer making up for her slim resume with greater ideological zeal This is how that is done now in the Democratic Party. Despite the failure of identity politics to sway the election, it remains the only game in Liberal Town, and the Democrats have good reason to assume it's ultimate primacy is still inevitable, once demographic change renders the white vote, as such, inconsequential.

So the Democrats are nearly powerless to arrest their spiral down the rabbit hole of identity politics. I have to assume there are adults still in the Democrats' barracks dismayed to see the direction the party has taken, but they can't openly address, or even name, the problem. Identity politics have worked very well for the Democratic Party after all, and Hillary Clinton was an uncommonly bad candidate (and very, very white). It's just there's not much Hispanic and black political talent. Hispanic America is dominated by one of the least political peoples in the world, mestizos originating in Mexico. This is a virtue as far as I'm concerned, and I suspect as far as the White and Jewish old guard of the Democrats are concerned as well, but it has presented the Democrats with the problem of finding qualified Hispanics to run for office. Muslims appear to be inherently political, as a result of Islam's intensely political nature and the Middle Eastern ethnic origins of the majority. Ellison of course is an American-born convert, but the act of conversion, especially for a black American, is itself a selection for political ambition.

So it seems the Democrats have painted themselves into an identity politics corner--ironically because us bigots and racists have always had a point: there isn't a lot of intellectual energy in black and brown America--and, somehow, Asians, despite wealth and achievement (or maybe because of it) remain the miscellaneous category in the rainbow coalition. Multiculturalism ensures a great deal of mediocrity. Perhaps this hasn't been thought through entirely by the cultural Marxists holding the Democratic Party hostage.

Hillary Clinton doubled down on identity politics, despite her husband's sound advice to abandon them and campaign on the economy. Her failure is a microcosm of her party's still unfolding failure: she presented her sex as her strength and it proved her weakness. She failed precisely because she behaved as a woman, thinking the way to victory was to get other women creeped-out about Donald Trump. She was thinking with her pussy, so to speak.

The strength of identity politics has always been its status as That Which Will Not be Challenged. Now it has become its weakness.

Monday, January 23, 2017

The Million Menses March

 The Women's March came to Portland yesterday. Tens of thousands turned out. The mood was festive and family-friendly (that is the kiddies' physical well-being wasn't immediately threatened), contrasting the march of the day before, which degenerated by late night into countless small standoffs with police who used tear gas and flash bangs to clear streets and protect businesses.

Affable--cloying even--foot police in small groups along the route fielded handshakes and thanks from marchers. They spent the night before in riot gear hustling from scene to scene as people hurled verbal abuse and the occasional projectile. I saw one pair of officers wearing the ubiquitous "pussy hats". Still, their very presence set off the occasional autistic screecher.



Many brought children. "Nasty girls" was one theme; one shoulder-borne very young child carried a sign saying "future nasty girl". Vagina was the overarching theme; women in vagina costumes complete with labia majora and minora and clitoris, signs playing on the word "pussy" or "grab em by the pussy" were everywhere, sketches of vaginas and fallopian tubes fashioned to look horns, one such formed into the "Don't Tread on Me" snake from the Gadsden Flag.
One group of young women performed a Pussy Riot-like dance routine to an obscene rap song as they moved along with the paraders. Lots of families with kids who wouldn't have looked out of place at Epcot center, if not for the signs they were carrying. Piles of trashed signs everywhere. As we passed City Hall I saw the mayor out front giving an interview to a lone reporter; no one paid him any mind except a small child, flush with all the indulgent treatment, telling her day she'd like to go meet the mayor.

Palestinian-Portland Solidarity

One recurring presence among the signs and symbols in any Portland demonstration is the Palestinian flag, of course. Here it is sharing space with one of the more common specific themes of the new Trump-out demonstrations, the upside-down American flag:


Portland has an active liberal Jewish community of course (I've suffered, and perversely enjoyed, the wrathful gaze of the yenta eavesdropping on my politically incorrect conversation at a local breakfast place at least once), and the Palestinian flag has caused controversy before between Jews and pro-Palestinian protesters.
The city is big on refugees and, contrary to its image as a liberal "whitopia", has a significant and growing Muslim community, many of them Africans brought in by Catholic Charities, which has a sizable operation in the city. The obvious disdain of the newcomers for Israel is just one of the many contradictions festering under the umbrella of Trump hate.

Later that day after the square mostly cleared out these fellows caused some confusion, but were not physically assaulted as far as I know, with their plain display of Old Glory:


Fire and Brimstone and Fire

Westboro Baptist Church style preachers showed up at the inauguration day protests in Portland. Just as they did at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, they staked out a spot and bravely harried the crowd with intentionally offensive rhetoric. This guy held out for well over an hour. There were no other counter-protesters there. They drew a hostile crowd immediately. Some of the anti-Trump protesters formed a cordon around them to prevent their fellows from assaulting them. The last time I checked I saw they had been pelted with some sort of thick red liquid. They managed at least to upstage the flag burning.

 

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Trump Names the Tools

From the new administration's whitehouse.gov website:

Our job is not to make life more comfortable for the rioter, the looter, or the violent disrupter.

As if calling rioters rioters and looters looters wasn't triggering enough to the Establishment, in using the word "disrupter" the administration is calling out one of the pop-ideologies of the opposition that seeks to broaden from occasional rioting to "disrupting" daily life anywhere and everywhere, like last year's bizarre campaign against late breakfasts or hangovers, or something, called #BlackBrunch.

But the real trolling here lies in the fact that the Trump Administration--if it keeps its promise--constitutes the greatest disruption of the status quo in modern American history.

Friday, January 20, 2017

New World Order

Kevin MacDonald quotes from evolutionary anthropologist John Tooby's article about "coalitional instincts" in response this year's "annual question" at Edge.org, "What Scientific Concept Should be More Widely Known" (emphasis added):
Coalition-mindedness makes everyone, including scientists, far stupider in coalitional collectivities than as individuals. Paradoxically, a political party united by supernatural beliefs can revise its beliefs about economics or climate without revisers being bad coalition members. But people whose coalitional membership is constituted by their shared adherence to “rational,” scientific propositions have a problem when—as is generally the case—new information arises which requires belief revision. To question or disagree with coalitional precepts, even for rational reasons, makes one a bad and immoral coalition member—at risk of losing job offers, her friends, and her cherished group identity. This freezes belief revision.
I think Tooby's right, and maybe more than he knows or would care to admit (MacDonald writes that evolutionary psychology was created to bowdlerize sociobiology under another name and apply an evolutionary analysis of human behavior that circumvents difficult problems regarding racial differences in IQ).
Religious mystery in the West under Christianity became sufficiently remote from the worldly to allow incredible advances in science and technology, because those advances, for the most part, posed no threat to it. Western thinkers were given room to roam--not nearly total, but enough to create the modern world. Paradoxically, it seems the replacement of a religious moral order with a rational moral order (predicated on human equality) has taken away that room in the most exigent field of study there is: human behavior.
It reminds of something I wrote a couple of years back (in response to another Occidental Observer article about an academic proposing a ban on the study of genetic variation in intelligence among populations):
The religious believe a fantasy about God and the afterlife; the believer of the current state religion of human equality believes a fantasy about human biology with ongoing implications for the here and now. Which holds more potential for destruction?

Diary, January 19, 2017

The weather improved just in time for Portland's first scheduled anti-Inauguration protests, having gone from sub-freezing cold snap (the last three days have been the first days above freezing this year) to warming just enough to turn the precipitation into cold, sometimes freezing, rain, then today easing up to cool but dry, even sunny at times. I went downtown to witness the only protest I could find scheduled. Students from Portland State University were to march from the school's campus at the south end of downtown to Pioneer Courthouse Square a few blocks north, where they would speak against the nomination of Education Secretary Betsy DeVos.

A few people milled around waiting, mostly curious civilians like myself, for the scheduled four o'clock beginning. Sometime after four enough had gathered, arriving alone or in small groups rather than in a marching body, to begin. The specific reason for this particular protest was the nomination of Betsy Devos, charter school advocate, for Secretary of Education. Eventually a quorum was reached and people began making speeches with a bullhorn. I was watching a young woman try to excite the crowd with a little call and response, a black man approached and struck up a conversation.

He was heavyset and unremarkable looking; he could have fallen into any category, but the moment he began speaking I read him, with relief, as what some--certainly not me--would describe as a nerd. I was relieved he wasn't crazy--though I suspected still he was at the least flaky--or, I soon realized, a lefty. I didn't reveal myself right away as he cautiously sounded me out with some mild criticism of what was being said. Finally he just excused himself before asking me where I stood.
"Well, I'm definitely not with them." I said, indicating the protesters, still not entirely sure about him. The way thus cleared, he started in on a sort of running critique of the protesters and the whole "resistance". At some point I realized I had seen him before at a pro-Trump rally last May that was disrupted by anti-Trump protesters with noisemakers and sirens. He's a Trump supporter. He proceeded to impress me with his range of knowledge of current affairs. Good guy, maybe a little flaky. Just like me.

The protest was a bit of a dud. The real action is expected tomorrow. Business and the city's light rail are shutting down in anticipation. I shall be out there. No getting arrested this time.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

The Curious Case of Bradley's Button

Yesterday Steve Sailer noted today how Chelsea (nee Bradley) Manning's gender dysphoria, having gone from footnote to forefront during his incarceration along with the rise of the trans rights movement, is now seen by fashionable convention as a legitimate sympathy factor favoring President Obama's commutation of his sentence, as evidenced by the New York Times:



It's a cliche that politics are mostly, if not entirely, about social identity, as individuals vote in line with their perceived in-group values and needs. Needless to say, in the US social identity in politics and beyond has so long been pathologized for whites and encouraged, even romanticized, in minorities until it has become unchallenged convention that majority interests are inherently suspect and white interests nonexistent or evil. An astounding notion. It's hard to say how much of this is cynical manipulation and how much is the obliviousness of the elites' true-believing middle management corps.

In a nation with a dominant ethnic majority social identity politics arrange along class lines. In ours for a long time now they've arranged themselves around ethnic (now sexual and sexual preference) identity. Obama promised his election would transcend this. There was a curious, very un-progressive appeal to order inherent in it; even, that progressive bugaboo nostalgia played a part (reeling from something like a national identity crisis after President Bush squandered so much national prestige in his ill-fated Iraq invasion, we were encouraged to revisit what has become, however stupidly, our imagined greatest achievement--black civil rights.) We would be one, finally by squaring the circle of racism.

 Over his time in office we've come not only to see the impossibility of this, but the fact the elite wants nothing to do with it. Division is the point--diversity after all means division. It was social identity for me but not for thee, white people. This is what half the country rejected with Trump's election.

With the reaction to Trump's success--itself a reaction to this long process--this shaming dynamic of de-legitimizing white majority interests and valorizing minority interests reached its nadir, and, after a half century of unopposed triumph, it failed grandly in last year's presidential election. Maybe the de-legitimization of white interests represents less a transformation of politics than the death thereof, part and parcel of the surrender, led by Buckleyite conservatism in America, to the globalist order that is at the moment reeling from the one-two punch of Trump and Brexit. The interests of white Americans and Europeans were the very problem, it is now openly declared (though it's important to note this would have been considered insane at the beginning of this progress of slow-walking us to our demise), as witnessed by American slavery and the Holocaust. Now it isn't just populism that is the  enemy, but the population--to be corrected by the demographic diversification of that population into competing ethnic groups under an imperial multi-pole represented by Washington DC, New York and Brussels.

It's part, maybe the essential part, of that death of meaningful democratic politics in the West. As Kevin Grace said, "politics, as conventionally understood, died in that bunker in Berlin when Hitler put a bullet in his brain."

But politics go on, divorced from policy and meaning (for it remains to be seen if the Trump phenomenon, as much as anything else an insurgency against this order, will pan out). And that means politics as advertising. Advertising itself is advanced political method. And advertising is less about social identity--that gauche recognition of practical reality and real interests--than it is about aspirational social identity. Buy this product and display your status, or front a higher status, or even ascend thereby to a higher status (for perception is all--politics has taken this quite to heart). Status of course includes moral status--show your social "awareness" by buying "green" or "non-conflict" diamonds (wealth and virtue combine in the ultimate display).

A short conversation with the average anti-Trump civilian will quickly illustrate for you how much politics have become, for the fashionably conventional, aspirational social identity striving.

But with the transformation of Bradly Manning, hero or traitor, to Chelsea Manning, unassailable virtue-victim, represents a new aspect of social identity in politics. Now we are expected to identify and apply a premium or penalty depending on the social identity of the subject class or individual. The classes warranting a political, cultural and--apparently now with official recognition of Manning's identity--can only be expected to grow (and compete with each other), while the classes for which a penalty is applied will remain static (and shrinking along with demographic and cultural change): white, male, straight. This does not end well--unless we end it now in defiance, somehow.


Tuesday, December 27, 2016

All the world's a-rage

Steve Sailer on A&E's recent withdrawal of its planned KKK reality show after revelations participants were paid:

Yet, that seems like it would have been the most authentic imaginable version of today’s KKK: hired performers engaging in Ku Klux Klan Live Action Role Playing: KKKLARPing.

It strikes me that much progressive activism is the blue-pilled young LARPing as Sixties radicals. The social justice profession at the same time resembles a jobs program for those who excel at it. It's a place for mediocre minorities and others rendered unemployable to some extent by their education in social justice. A student majoring in the Narrative is kind of like a student athlete, hoping to distinguish himself and earn a paid career. Politics, even celebrity are the high-end possibilities. But it's a jobs program that has the unfortunate effect of eroding even elite institutions.

Protesters successfully shook down the University of Missouri System in late 2015 with literal shit for narrative material (the infamous "poop swastika") and figurative shit for brains. If you arrived in Current Year America from a saner time at first glance you'd assume anyone getting that much out of that little were narrative giants. Then you'd get a load of the Mizzou protesters and wonder just what the hell was going on.

The university president who initially took a firm stance against the protests no doubt was unimpressed. And when he was forced to resign in tears it was probably because the temerity of that early opposition, not because the complaints or complainants had grown any more impressive over time.

The protests featured a familiar manifestation: role-playing blacks working themselves into a frenzy performing for beguiled, reverential whites, for whom it's enough to role-play at being witness to the grandest suffering of all, African American suffering.



At Yale about the same time the public shaming of a professor, again on the slightest pretext, was a profound shame on the institution, not merely because of the Maoist nature of the confrontation but because of the display put on by Yale's minority students:



The universities soak up an awful lot of students who they can't do much with but park in undemanding social justice courses, from whence they are sent by social justice professors to protest ginned-up grievances--to LARP--for the purpose extorting more social justice courses, programs, departments and, of course, professors in a vicious cycle.

This New America sure sounds interesting.

Sunday, December 11, 2016

The Vagina Giveth, The Vagina Taketh Away

From Steve Sailer, on Hillary's awful political instincts:

But then Hillary still went ahead with putting the failed cop-killer’s mom on stage at the 2016 Democratic National Convention shortly after the mass cop killings by BLM-inspired terrorists in Dallas and Baton Rouge as part of her “Mothers of the Movement” brainstorm. 

What's so deliciously ironic about Hillary Clinton's failed bid to be the first woman president--and what will likely never be appreciated--is how its failure is largely due to her being a woman. Ignoring her husband's sound advice she and BFF Huma decided to pursue a strategy down the homestretch of seeking to get women creeped out about Donald Trump sexually. It's all so cliche it blends into the Narrative like camouflage.

Monday, November 21, 2016

portlanarcho-tyranny

"Well, thank you for a most pleasant arrest experience so far." I said. The petite cop in riot gear smiled. We stood in a line of detainees, each with his own police escort on arm. My flex cuffs were mercifully loose. We chatted a little as we waited. She was holding me firmly by the inside of the arm above the elbow. Nothing at that moment could have distracted me from my gloom but this: I wondered if my arm felt as good as her hand. Male physical vanity never rests. "Be careful out there" I said as I got on the bus. More vanity. It was sometime after midnight, Sunday morning.

In Portland anti Trump protests began on election night and by Wednesday protesters were closing roadways and besieging city hall. Faced with massive demonstrations and guided by a progressive mayor/police commissioner, police adopted a light, even helping hand, closing a freeway on behalf of marching protesters not once but twice. This despite protesters turning away the first time police halted rush hour traffic for them ahead of their path. As a police response, it probably represents a first.


Marchers managed to ditch their chaperones and close a freeway down once more all on their own that first Wednesday, nicely capping off the hat trick. So far protests had been peaceful and evenhanded in their distribution of misery among thousands of commuters, and no delayed emergency vehicles were reported.

But by Thursday the initial shock had worn off, the radical element had shown up and the self-feeding hysteria was picking up steam; the mayor's room to annoy strategy became untenable. From a demonstration reported in the thousands antifa youths in masks emerged, some armed with bats, vandalizing a nightlife district. Police dispersed them with tear gas and flashbang grenades, arresting twenty-five. The city claimed a million dollars in damages the next day.

But I missed all that. I had set out that night, having determined after Wednesday's remarkable events to witness whatever happened next--and to stream it online. I checked to find one demonstration was set for somewhere in the northwest and another for the nearby riverfront park downtown. The weather was dry and warm for fall, with scattered picturesque clouds moving under a near-full moon. The demonstration at the park it was.

Crossing the bridge toward downtown I was startled by an antifa flitting across the street at an angle in the other direction, off to my ten o'clock as if to go around me. He negotiated train tracks that run down the center of the road with affected grace. His backpack was stretched and molded around the handle of what looked like a racquet but was probably a club; a type of kit common among them, I suspect, as I saw a few more. At the downtown waterfront park I found a candlelight vigil underway. I approached; a man addressed the small crowd:
"...Donald Trump was not elected. Donald Trump had the power and influence to put himself inside the White House...I hate to be the conspiracy theory guy, but when states that were blue four years ago all of a sudden magically turn red all over the map that is power and influence...I want you to know that your rights, your surgeries, your papers, everything you need as a trans person is not going to disappear. I will fight for that shit! I will die for that shit! I will go to jail for that shit! You will not be without what you need under my watch, under each other's wach, we have each other, our allies have us, and I want us to take a moment to think of the people we need to be allies to. If you're from this country you need to be allies to immigrants. 
We need to be allies to children. Children do not have the capacity to articulate their feelings, they do not have power over their own beings to come to the rallies...they are not in control of their own destiny. They need to see you, transgender children need to see you, transgender children, even those who are not out yet, need to see you, they need to know that you are there and that you will fight for them and that they can talk to you. 
Immigrant children, and children, I work with children, I work with children who are homeless in the city, I work with children who face food insecurity in the city, I work with children who come up to me every day and tell me they're hungry, I work with children who do not have a bed to sleep in at night and it is the last goddamn thing that breaks my heart that the one thing in this world that keeps these children going, their parents, they now fear will go away.  It's heartbreaking. 
Lastly, I want to say, take good care of yourselves. Can we take a minute? Can we breathe? Can we all just (inhales and exhales deeply). Look a the moon. It's beautiful. Look at nature. Feel the air. Feel, what if feels to be okay. It is okay to take a moment to be okay. Remember that. Thank you."
A young lesbian hesitated nervously.
"We believe in you!" Someone shouted over encouraging cheers.
"So. I cried. I cried a lot. You know I've been seeing a lot of quotes from my conservative friends on Facebook, about how we're all a bunch of crybabies. You know what? I am a crybaby! I'm crying, because every time I hear that man's voice, I hear someone saying, 
'nice ass' 
'what's your cup size?' 
'damn you're looking beautiful today honey' 
'you'd be a lot more beautiful if you smiled' "
 Sympathetic boos followed the last one immediately, as if a crescendo had been reached.
"Every time I see his face I see the face of the men who grabbed me--"
The group cheered as she choked up.
"And the fact that, you know, he doesn't just remind me of those people, he is one of those people. It shakes me to my core, and makes me so scared, and threatened, and I feel like--"
She choked up a little longer; someone came forward with a tissue; scattered laughs and applause followed.
"...but, I woke up yesterday morning, after sleeping for three hours, because that's what my mind would allow me to do and I thought of this poem, oh, you know, most of you might recognize it and even know it by heart, it's very famous, it's by the president of my soul, Dr. Maya Angelou, and, uh, every time I feel like this country thinks that I'm less than a person, every time I feel threatened or scared, as a woman, as an American, I think of this poem and it really helps me..."
She gave an impassioned reading of Still I Rise.

A man spoke next.
"...I also work with Catholic Charities, with their Refugee Resettlement Program; we have refugees coming in still, we have a lot, because we have to get them in before something happens, so we have a lot of work that needs to get done...we need as much help as we can get so if you're into that please look into volunteering with Catholic Charities..."
A "bisexual Jewish woman from the South" followed him.
" want to share with you my experience today a work. I was sitting around a table, with my boss who is a Muslim Somalian refugee...alongside a queer white woman from Portland Maine...another Somalian...an immigrant from Nicaragua...all of us sat together today and cried, but also we wrote on a board what we can do, what we can do in this community to take action; and we need to align our white allies with communities of color, with the LGBT community, and I don't see enough of that..."
Despite all that, in nearing her close she offered, and with genuine feeling, what used to be a standard trope, that she's been all over the world and America is still the best country on earth. Crickets.

Less political types spoke as well; the more measured the sentiment the more difficult it was to express, for all the necessary hedging and stumbling to avoid offending the heightened sensitivities of the assembled; and always the speaker having to double back and denounce Trump, like a runner having to stay close to first base. A boy of about five clambered about in a rainbow tutu as they spoke. The eternally wise eight-year old made an appearance. I didn't linger too long before going home.

At home about an hour later I learned rioting had been going on in the Pearl District. Heading back downtown I found a police line cordoning off a boulevard down which police were driving demonstrators.  A crisp voice over a loudspeaker commanded people off the street, repeating what became the boilerplate of the campaign, ordering demonstrators off the street, warning of arrest, threatening "the use of riot control measures."
The standard engagement of the week became police pushing demonstrators down a city block, lessening their numbers as the less committed bail out via cross streets, until the last few die-hards were boxed in by police lines all around and dealt with. Still, the papers had only reported a few arrests and I would only witness two myself over the week. The last I saw--or rather heard via police loudspeaker--Thursday night of the protesters they were being ordered out of a parking structure near the courthouse.

They returned downtown that Friday, taking over the oft-occupied city hall of this progressive city. The road-blocking strategy yielded its first injury, when a pair of toughs--law and order's last defenders in this skewed order--stopped their car and order demonstrates to clear the roadway. After an impromptu debate on civil disobedience, they contented themselves by shooting someone in the leg before speeding away. They were caught two days later. The suspects are black, the alleged shooter just fifteen. The shooing victim's name is Hispanic. The quick-reacting cops and paramedics were, probably, white. As a narrative vessel, this one was unworthy from stem to stern.

By the time I made it downtown Friday night things were in full swing already; protesters were occupying a hotel district on Broadway. Police were massed across an intersection of harrying, disorganized protesters; the loudspeaker repeated the drill. Autos weaved their way slowly through the mass of protesters and hangers-on; "Broadway is open to vehicular traffic" the loudspeaker explained at points, ordering everyone else to take to the sidewalk and move south. I joined the mass of protesters already engaged in the with riot police in the squaring off phase of the now standard cycle of standoff-chase-standoff.

I waited behind the front line of protesters facing police across an intersection. Occasionally a shrill taunt emerged from them. Someone from behind threw a plastic bottle of water toward the police; it landed without making it past our own front line and rolled slowly toward the cops. This was the only act of aggression toward police I witnessed. Eventually the loudspeaker went silent. The protesters went mostly silent, pensive. The cops, a mass barely distinguishable in the smoke-dirtied mist, were silent. I heard a rattling on the ground; a flashbang went off under my feet and we were off again, running a block south before stopping and turning back. The police kept coming. A lone protester held the line to the end, and the cops walked right through him. Again we were running. Again we stopped. I almost knocked over a girl.
"It's okay, it's okay." We said in unison, even reaching over to pat one another on the shoulder in nearly identical motions. The police didn't pull up, but kept coming, firing another round of flashbangs and driving us farther down the street.

Farther up the street some were trying to create a barricade with the paltry few articles they could find: some plastic newspaper vending machines, traffic cones, some of those wooden sawhorse-style street construction signs. I passed on bailing out to the west for one more block.

Coming out of the mist of smoke upon a cross street I saw those ahead of me raising their hands before a wall of waiting cops. I turned around; the wall of cops that had been pushing us down the street were upon us now, their line melting as the street filled with police in riot gear. "You're under arrest!" One barked, pointing at me. "Sit down." I meekly sat on the pavement. I had been on the street about an hour.

Another hour on the street and a commandeered city bus showed up to collect us. A cop guided a small female toward me and watched as she approached nervously. I made as meek as I could as I turned around and offered my hands. She seemed relieved, and took her time ensuring the plastic handcuffs weren't too tight.

Five of us were crammed into the back row of the bus. On my right a kid, biracial, with a woeful look under pleading eyebrows. He had been complaining of getting pepper sprayed since an hour before on the pavement. Now he had to piss too. He alternates between begging and taunting; occasionally he makes jokes, crude in subject matter and cruder in construct, all in the torturous plaintive, questioning tones of modern generic ghetto pidgin.

"Gotta piss yo. Hey yo, gotta piss."

To my left was a veteran activist, older than the others (but still far younger than I, the oldest by far, it appeared, in the lot), bristle-bearded but clean-cut, with the earnest probing face of a Midwestern evangelical. He is helpfully calm. On the other someone I couldn't make out, another biracial type, all menace coiled up in the corner. In a low voice that carries he begins taunting the cops immediately, with the worst insults. They're pussies, they're faggots.

A skinny kid with acne started in, emboldened perhaps, a classic post-adolescent high-pitched whine, to go with Pepper Spray's mumbling middle register and Menace's. Like Pepper Spray  he appeared to be an apolitical type, like many I would see that night. Nobody had done anything wrong, and everybody was pleading their case to the indifferent cops stationed at the bus doors.

"How long do you think they'll keep us?" Someone asked.
"It all depends on whether or not they want to fuck with us." I affected an experienced air, but surmised as much was true.

The Veteran and I tried to calm them--I pretended to know what I was talking about--by assuring them we'd probably be quickly processed and released with a ticket.

The menacing guy in the corner started calling out cops individually, using their names if he could make them out. They returned only hard, sometimes uncomprehending--is he serious?--stares; he redoubled his efforts. He too had to piss now. He and the pepper spray victim traded bad jokes about having to piss. Acne whined in. I was sure a supple enough legal mind could easily construe this as "cruel and unusual punishment".

"They're all faggots." Menace said. "Fucking pigs."
An effeminate young man with a painful looking under-bite squirmed in his seat. My glasses had been sliding at a glacial pace down my nose, resting precariously at the tip. The pepper spray survivor joined in, egging him on and providing his own milder insults. Even Acne was emboldened. Cops shuffled on and off the bus continually, peering into the darkness at us before moving away.

"Oh look at them." Menace said. "They wanna kick some ass now."
A pair of cops got off the bus.
"They're gonna go suck each other's dicks." He slurred.
"I don't know about this homophobia" the effeminate boy said, looking away nervously.
Menace paused. Was he caught up?
"It's not homophobia." He hissed.
"It is. And I just can't take--"
"Then don't."
There was another pause.

Someone turned to the subject of politics. The veteran activist at my side--the only clearly political one near me--painted a grim picture of protesting under Trump; demonstrations like ours would soon be met with real bullets and camps. "They will just start hauling people away." He said. I eyed him furtively through side-cast eyes; he appeared to be serious. One of the kids nodded somberly.
Someone suggested we're doomed. No, there's hope, the Veteran offered. Two short years of prolonged demonstrations and resistance up to the midterms, yielding a Democratic sweep, would save us.

"Gotta piss yo."

They led us inside in pairs to a row of chairs covered in plastic garbage bags. Menace, somehow he got in there ahead of me, despite having offended every cope he saw, was still growling about having to piss. They sat me next to a short stout guy with a pink Mohawk--he reminds me of Sam Hyde. He's been in there all day, or he's been in there twice in the same day, or something; whatever it is, the cops all seem to know him by name, and some stop by to engage in lame banter. He laughed good naturedly, explaining he had pissed someone or other off, thus here he was. His good cheer wore better than the cops' passive aggressive comedy.

They brought in the pepper spray victim. He had been allowed to pee, but this only unleashed a new fury.
"Yo I think I got some of that shit on my balls yo."
"I told you to be careful." One of the cops said. "I warned you about transference. I told you not to touch your eyes."
"Yo you didn't tell me about my balls yo."
"I would have thought you'd make the connection." The cop said with satisfaction.
"Seriously yo. If you've got any milk."--milk is an agent for relieving pepper spray--"You could just put that shit in a dish and I could, you know, like squat in it..."

"Sounds like a fetish to me." I said. Mohawk erupted in laughter. A cop--round-faced, bald-domed and cheerful, who had been engaged in cheerful, if lame banter with Mohawk moments before, came over and directed me to the other end of the row of seats.

"Was it my material?"

Pairs of plainclothes cops sat at folding tables in an impromptu interrogation room. I was dealt two women who looked like very tired schoolteachers. We chatted amiably. They determined I wasn't an out of town radical, or particularly political. They read me my rights. hey discern I'm from town and apolitical. I probably revealed too much, or would have revealed too much if there was anything to reveal, in my exhaustion.

They sent me along. I watched the guy ahead of me at the searching table, so when I went through the drill I might be spared the bluff, dismissive treatment of the young cop patting me down. It was no help. His boss, a female, is better. She seems to be staring at my midsection with perplexity. My vanity kicks in again. What is that look? But she looks like a lesbian. Is she a lesbian? Boy cop handed me my jacket and sent me off to be photographed.
A band was affixed to my wrist and we marched down the hall to a waiting area, where banks of chairs faced a television showing Back to the Future Part III. On another wall a screen showed our mugshots, each with its own status bar underneath, indicating those ready for release and those awaiting "housing", or jail. We watched and waited.

This screen alternated with a public (prison) service announcement, satisfying an act of Congress regarding prison rape, and advising us of the resources available to us should we suffer from sexual abuse while in incarceration. An old con came on to tell his tale. He looks tough enough; indeed, he says he assumed he could defend himself, but he couldn't...
Grim statistics drove the point home.
After some months he was able to get someone to listen, and to get help (shot from across a medical examination room, a blurred figure is being attended to by a nurse). It's not easy, but you can do it. I imagine some scrawny kid awaiting "Housing" watching this. Lurid nightmare daydreams of getting drawn into the system due to some slight mistake--or mistaken slight of some figure of importance--come to mind. Vanity takes many forms, like Dracula.

From here we were drawn in twos and threes, as we had been through the process all night, and marched down the hall. I was relieved to see my status go yellow--no Kafka-esque nightmare so far. I relaxed a bit when they called me up. Down the hall we went, following the broad black line on the floor and around a corner. It was about seven o'clock in the morning.

"I almost wish you guys had let me out later." The guy behind me said to one of the cops. "I was going to buy some champagne." All relaxed confidence now.
"Oh, you've got a little more time." The cop said, without, I would soon note, a hint of irony. They halted us in front of a cell door. No, I thought, no...
Into the holding tank we went, along with all our companions we had thought were being marched down the hall to freedom.
At ten o'clock they finally let me out into a dim overcast day that was nonetheless blinding to my eyes. My first weekend in Trump's America.