Monthly Archives: January 2016

The inner dialogue of the urbane left: Sanders v Clinton as a choice between idealism and pragmatism

A few years years back liberals did a lot of chortling over the Rove-ian notion that you don’t accept the confines of circumstance, IE, you need to aspire and act in pursuit of things beyond the superficial , practical ‘reality base’.

http://theweek.com/articles/601420/left-vs-realitybased-community

Now, fair to say it was the mere word-play there that inspired a lot of the chortling, and notions of who lived in reality and who didn’t.

But the decision making / evaluation operandi is supposed to be that you act with some disregard to the assumptions of your circumstance and, I dunno, see a corresponding shift of the paradigm / Overton window of potentiality that is accommodating to whatever you wanted to accomplish as you start accomplishing it.

It’s a bit too hopeful, too circular, and something of a triumph of the will mindset.   And Linker sees the Sanders supporting left making the Rove mistake in having a disregard for immutable reality.  He’s right.  I’d say it this way…. The reason progressivisim rightfully pursues incrementalism within a democracy is because incrementalism doesn’t incite an electoral revolt that ultimately squashes your progressive movement.

http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer/2016/01/what-sanders-doesnt-understand-about-politics.html

Problem is, that leaves you with Hillary.

Other:

Bernie really is playing the long game…. he won’t come out as an atheist to sprint ahead in the (D) nomination contest….  http://www.slate.com/blogs/the_slatest/2016/01/27/bernie_sanders_believes_in_a_version_of_god_he_says.html  gehar, gehar

Trump:  I think this is the high water mark.  Middling results in Iowa (he does not win).  This debate boycotting thing is tactically wrong.

Trump:  Trump’s support can not be alienated right?  I never have seen him asked about (fake) global warming, which might do the trick for that alienation.  I don’t think he gets off defying conservative orthodoxy and throwing in with warmist tax raisers.

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BOLD runs afoul of IMBY

This is a big deal in these parts.  Withrow and Marine are to have their elementary schools closed, if this is approved (which it may not be, given the reaction has been so poor).  And some other shuffling would happen.

http://www.startribune.com/proposed-closings-of-three-schools-in-stillwater-district-prompt-storm-of-protest/366499961/

So this is opposite of NIMBY, it’s IMBY that’s getting all in the face of the school board…. They want schools close by, they being the residents of Withrow and Marine.  Those there are some of the most bucolic places in the metro area to live, so the income demographics are pretty affluent.  Lots of horse and hobby farms.  Thus one might perhaps note some privilege being asserted here and then being pandered to (when the board declines to pass the measure….). But it does seem like a bad idea with fairly broad opposition.

I mean, cmon.  They’re looking to save $1M dollars.  That’s nothing and I’m sure it’s a savings that wouldn’t be realized anyway.

Trumpism as ‘Signaling’

I have been in contemplation of ‘virtue signaling’ a bit, a term that is increasing in use.

http://www.spectator.co.uk/2015/10/i-invented-virtue-signalling-now-its-taking-over-the-world/

I’d assert the left is generally guiltier of this than the right, a prime example being the notion we’re altruistically obligated to bring a bunch of culturally incompatible third world refugees over here and put them on welfare.  If you argue we ought to do that in absence of a real rationale…. That’s straight up virtue signaling…. of the lefty variety.

But it’s not like others can’t be guilty of this too, be it ‘virtue signaling’ or some other ‘signaling’.

And ya know…. much as we hear Trump speaks to ‘something’ out there, the dipshits people responding to him are in fact ‘signaling’.

To what?  Oh, there’s a kernel of wisdom / prudence on immigration… I guess.  But the big thing is, Trumpism is so low-brow and devoid that it’s a low hurdle-there to affirm it if you’re so inclined but otherwise not intellectually fit engage in this country’s political discussion.  It’s to say, he’s attracting the obtuse, the low-info, the disengaged, and the nihilistic who by affirming Trumpism are able to ‘signal’ something that they’d otherwise be incapable of signaling and not have a vehicle to signal with.

So he’s ‘leading’ right?  You telling me these people are going to show up for him next Tuesday?  http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/430272/are-cnn-and-cbs-overestimating-turnout-expect-caucus-night

I’m not buying it.  I say Trump never wins a primary / caucus, and its Rubio at the end.

Other

….Not obvious to me that Sarah Palin helps Trump.  I don’t think Palin has a politically active audience anymore

… Palin…. Wow.

… Much as Trump is a POTUS potentiality, let’s acknowledge that the Overton window is open in a similar way for Bernie.  It’s quite a bit better than a remote possibility that he wins the Democrat nomination. And ya know if he does garner the delegate math there…. They got to run him or destroy the party.  So I was thinking, who’s his VP?  It’s probably Keith Ellison.  Think about it….

A visit to the gun shop: where we are at with panic buying

We don’t have many good ones in Washington County, by the way.  We have Cabela’s and Gander Mountain, and then a couple smaller independents in Hugo and Forest Lake that I haven’t strolled through in years because I don’t go up there much.  So I was over at Luther Toyota in Golden Valley getting my airbag recall work done, and I swung into a real gun store, the Frontiersmn on 394 and Louisiana.  Good shop, and due to proximity, probably the preferred venue for Strib reporters trying to observe gun culture.  What I saw:

  • Quite a few customers in the mid afternoon
  • Staff hanging on the phone waiting for NICS bg checks to complete. This is on par with how the press says the system is a bit swamped now
  • Saw a young man have his bg check come back ‘hold’.
  • Some bare shelves and walls in places. Not much inventory of the popular, contemporary personal protection pieces.
  • Quite a bit of some decades old closet shelf stuff that had no doubt been traded in on contemporary personal protection pieces.
  • I think six, 3-screw Ruger revolvers that predated 1970. The Ruger 3-screw is a classic now, a real peach.  And as I say, these were no doubt traded in for something modern and antiseptic.
  • I put $50 down on this Ruger 3-screw, a Single Six .22 made in 1960, cuz…. stags are my archaic bailiwick, and the old Sambars on this are fantastic, and ya never find them anymore, and this gun was $400, at which point you’re getting $300 worth of gun and $300 worth of grips for $400. That’s how I roll, I like layaway, I like old shit, and I don’t like paying blue book for it.

I said that: Bernie the unpleasant scold

Just below, couple days ago I said Sanders was striking me as a hyper focus socialism geek who in getting elected to higher office didn’t actually overcome the inability to play well with others that invariably pilot fishes with that geek attribute.  Instead, he’s won because he perhaps conforms in ways to a political temperament unique to Vermont.   And he’s not actually temperamentally equipped to be President like Hillary is.  This article pre-dates my observation, but I didn’t see it until this morning when the link for it appeared on Instapundit:  http://lansingcitypulse.com/article-12189-The-trouble-with-Bernie.html

What can I say…  I’m trying to make true observations around here, that’s exactly what I’m trying to do.

Socialism geek

There’s all kinds of geeks amirite.  Star wars geeks, comic book geeks, video game geeks, music geeks.  We’re talking about the common fixations that can afflict a certain personality type that has a hyper-focus attribute / capability.  I submit, there is such a thing as a socialism / Marxism / Labor movement geek, they exist in meaningful numbers.  I encountered a couple in college.  Then in my adult years, there was a ball team in my league headed up by some economics TAs at one of the local private colleges, they called themselves the Wobblies.  An amateur baseball team with ostensibly Eugene Debs and the IWW as its mascotry.  They are still around, can be looked up.  A perhaps uncommon intersection of socialism geekdom and baseball geekdom.

Bernie Sanders is a socialism geek.  He loves Eugene Debs, was active on the domestic academic red fringe there as a young man.  http://nypost.com/2016/01/16/dont-be-fooled-by-bernie-sanders-hes-a-diehard-communist/  Which is fine, as far as it goes, I’m not trying to invoke McCarthy-ism here.  Now yes, we do in this country under most circumstances de facto bar socialists from office.  But the other thing is, this geek hyper-focus attribute is in itself kind of a self-obviator for office.   People with geek hyper focus lack other attributes that make for successful candidates.  Well rounded high functioners with people skills do better, these are the people we commonly see running.

So Sanders is an exception then to this observation I just laid out… He’s a socialism geek who became an urban mayor and became a congressman and became a senator who is running for President….  Critique the remarkableness of this, cuz it is remarkable, and I’d just assert I have doubts it’s because he has any great personal attributes that ameliorate his otherwise obviating geek misanthropy.  Rather, there’s been a lot of serendipity that brings him from shitty carpenter and alternative press reporter in the 70’s to this point now ….

And, ya know yes he’s cool and irascible and a character, something different as a candidate here… but the basic personality I’d say hasn’t evolved, and this is not a guy with attributes that would make for a competent presidency.  It would be something of a debacle.  He’s way less personally equipped to do this job than Hillary.

Anyway, not like we’ll get a chance to see this proven prescient, he will not be president.

Other debate notes:

Martin O’Malley knows that no one needs an AR-15 to hunt deer….  This is a glib kernel of wisdom that lefties like to share….  I’ve been in deer hunting parties the last 10 years where fella’s used ARs, these guys being much more attuned to the contemporary rifleman culture.  They used ARs, they got deer….  It’s a thing.

Sanders: spending 3 times more than Britain on health care.  Its true right?  Well don’t they have less people and ration the hell out of everything?  I’ve come to doubt it’s a bad thing we ‘spend so much on health care’.  Now yeah, the govt doesn’t like their increasing HC outlay, because in an environment where they can’t borrow or tax more $ it crowds out pork and other projects….  But otherwise why care what gets spent on HC?  Ultimately HC $ is just RNs and doctors and other HC workers making a living, you want less of that?

Hillary on Bill starting in the kitchen and working his way up:  Ya know, there’s no sense Hillary’s campaign is a project done for Bill’s gratification.  It’s her deal, which is good…  I just think I’m still right to note this enormous incongruity where she thinks she had to stay married to him to do all this, make the march from Sen to SoS to Pres….

Not much meaningful energy discussion last night