In response to the NH veto override

That a veto had to be overridden is shameful. That our agents of law enforcement need to feel protected by the possibility that some other agents might be ordered to kill a human in cold blood is shameful. When did we start hiring wimps to be our agents? Why have we made it safer to be a cop than a school girl? Why should agents of government be in a position to determine who lives and who dies and when? Because they were able to do it historically by drafting men into military service and sending them off to be killed in foreign lands at the whim of a few old men? Because males in the U.S. are still subject to involuntary servitude? Is that why interfering with the reproductive roles of females is also justified? To assert the supremacy of the agents, despite the fact that they have been hired as servants? How did we come to employ so many people who do not know their place?


Life is an abstraction. Being pro-life is to elevate an abstract concept or idea over the real. Plato referred to that, but I would argue he was being descriptive of a certain mode of thought, rather than prescriptive. Ideologues are prescriptive. For example, they assign a higher value to money, a figment of the imagination, than to the goods and services money represents.
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Authority Figure

Bill Maher says Americans want an authority figure in the White House. He may be right, if there is a difference between an authoritarian and a figure head and an authority figure. Presumably, there is such a thing as authority, not necessarily associated with an author.

How much credibility did the Dude derive from claiming authorship of “The Art of the Deal” which he did not actually write?

To what extent is authoritarianism discounted, especially by people who do not read, because it sounds like something authors do?

Dominionism. Is there a more telling variant?

In response to “When they see us”

While most of us are not binary thinkers, we do imagine/expect that our relationships are bilateral. People do unto others as they want to be done to. I suppose that is basic to reciprocating individuals. Self-centered individuals do not behave that way. They impute their own actions to others and then, in effect, respond to themselves. The result is an entirely fictional existence. That is bad enough, but there is another group whose behavioral relationships are effectively triangular. Their behavior towards one person is designed to affect the behavior of a third party. It is the mode of the kidnapper and the terrorist and the culture of obedience. The entities acted upon are innocent victims; have to be innocent and unsuspecting (children, nuns, modest minorities) for the very practical reason that they are both unprepared for an assault and least likely to retaliate. From which we can deduce, almost certainly, that triangulators/instigators are first and foremost cowards. None of this is any help or comfort to the innocent victims. But, it does account for why we have so many innocent people languishing on death row. The culture of obedience requires exemplars with which to impress on witnesses that they had better do what they are told, if they do not want to suffer the same fate. The culture of obedience depends on compliance. Even though, or because, obedience is a virtue, the culture of obedience is coercive. Voluntary obedience does not count and is not appreciated because it lacks the power which the authoritarian is after. It all seems very complicated, but when you consider other virtuous behaviors, such as reproduction and ingestion and perambulation, it is not difficult to see that the addition of force is what transforms a virtue into a vice. Some people suggest that the military has influenced the agents of law enforcement, but I would argue that coercion is endemic to a population that is incompetent and fearful and resorts to exploitation and aggression as a default. And when authority stands silent in the face of abuse, then abusers tend to escalate out of habit to murder. This is not a consolation to the abused, but I do think that, if consider abuse a more serious infraction and impose restraints, then escallation can be minimized. It is because abuse is not recognized as a serious violation of rights that we are constantly having to identify special categories (child, elder, handicapped, spousal, etc) to indicate that it is. I used to ask, “if animals have rights, can humans be far behind?” but the answer, it seems, is “yes.” Property rights still trump human rights. Indeed, in the law, minors have no rights since they are still the property of their parents. ‘Tis an echo of slavery we are still contending with.

January 11, 2017

I have not been posting many diaries to Dailykos in part because the readership has turned increasingly petty and gossip-prone. However, I think it is time to start comparing what was promised and what was produced by the Dude in the White House.

Two things here are, I think, particularly noteworthy. First is his admission that during the transition period he had already been trying to make “deals” with foreign entities. Since Nixon and Reagan got away with it in the run-up to their elections, this may be a fundamental Republican flaw, the failure to be cognizant that there is a time and place for everything and civilians meddling in foreign affairs is not in the cards.

The second thing is the Dude’s apparent misunderstanding of the injunction against having conflicting interests. He seems to have registered a prohibition as inapplicable because of the dispensation of the position he had won. No wonder he now hears “impeachment” as a “terrible, dirty word.”
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The Liar’s Advantage

One of the residual effects of the 2008 collapse, which was falsely blamed on individuals whose credit ratings were not up to snuff, is that the victims of that debacle are actually keen to accept the false blame in preference to acknowledging that they were deceived by crooked developers and real estate agents. People are more willing to accept false blame than to admit they were tricked.  The supporters of Donald Trump seem to be in the same bind. They are reluctant to admit they were deceived.  Of course, that is what the snake in the garden counted on, as well.

What accounts for this?  I suspect it may be pride.  The psyche is more inclined to claiming error than to admit being deceived. Therein lies the liar’s advantage.