Tuesday/Wednesday Highlights

Still on evening posting schedule, probably for the next two weeks.

  1. Some back history on high speed rail and its US development (or lack thereof).
  2. Light rock making news.
  3. Puppies can be cute …. and dogs again for your back to school crowd (my kids start tomorrow).
  4. Three notes on Mr Ryan … which for me the most interesting point was the remark about weak (perception or reality) that Congress has gotten. Seems to me the John Adams prediction of executive becoming royalty/tyrant (or the Roman weak-Congress allowing the start of the Empire). For those who worry about “climate change” this climate is one that will kill us first.
  5. And a comparison of Ryan and Obama, and their early life.
  6. The weather service bucks up for … what?
  7. Mr Lincoln.
  8. Ah, but there is the immediate and logical reply, “if you say that … you’re a bigot.” And you’d be right. Bigotry in its essence is condemning a group en masse where you should be judging people as individual. When you make the statement linked, you are condemning a group in exactly that way.
  9. Search or not?

11 Responses to Tuesday/Wednesday Highlights

  1. And a comparison of Ryan and Obama, and their early life.

    The way so many of you look at Obama’s past makes me really sad and pessimistic about the prospects of coming together as a country. You guys really just don’t get it. And you don’t get it to such an extent that I don’t think anybody can even explain it to you. It’s not rational, it’s just pure amygdala. Fear and hatred and othering and black-and-white thinking and overconfidence in gut feelings all wrapped up into one toxic passage.

    What chance do we have at even talking to each other?

  2. The weather service bucks up for … what?

    http://thinkprogress.org/justice/2012/08/15/694261/sen-rand-paul-info-wars/?mobile=nc

    Only a test. We on the left purposefully planted a typo in a news story and fed it to a demented 9/11 truther to see which, if any, right wingers follow the rantings of lunatics and also to see if they are enough about truth to actually do a minor fact check on a clearly implausible story before passing it along.

    Those who have failed the test to date:

    Rand Paul – Senator

    Mark Olson – Blogger

    Updates will continue to be posted as more are ensnared.

  3. Boonton,
    You let me know what lunatic ranting I did. “bucks up for … what?” For you that comprises “lunatic ranting?”

    If this was a test, you’ve failed the counter-test.

  4. JA,

    It’s not rational, it’s just pure amygdala. Fear and hatred and othering and black-and-white thinking and overconfidence in gut feelings all wrapped up into one toxic passage.

    Huh? Let’s see. What hatred did I express? “compare their early life.” OK. Do it. Which is more admirable? There’s not much of a choice there, eh? I’m just guessing, but is this where you claim I’m a crypto-racist? Or perhaps a not-crypto one. Fear and hatred and othering &c these are all emotional responses? Sorry, I don’t see any internal evidence of that. I don’t hate. I’m not afraid. I think the missing possibility of talking is in your self, not exterior.

    What do you find toxic in the comparison? Explicitly. Offer some evidence instead of your effing amygdalic response.

    Explain what?! to me?

    It’s unclear on what you think I’m supposed to be getting. Let’s see, when I was in college, I saw the groups that Mr Obama aligned himself with in college. I was non-political and vaguely liberal at the time and I despised them for their fake facade, their pseudo-rage and faux outrage. Guess what, little has changed.

    We can talk. Just don’t pretend that a qualification for conversation is that I think Mr Obama is admirable.

  5. Mark,

    No, I wasn’t referring to any crypto-racism, although I guess there might be some racial stuff going on with the pearl-clutching about his past drug use.

    Look at what’s listed:

    Obama smoked a lot of weed in high school and did “a little blow” afterwards. How sheltered or ignorant do you have to be to think that represents something significantly negative about the man 30+ years later?

    Mostly, I was talking about the socialism/Alinsky stuff when I was talking about the irrational fears. Also, the characterization of “community organizer” as “rabble-rousing socialism advocate” is completely unhinged.

    Maybe the difference is that you don’t know any people with pasts like Obama’s. I do. I know people who smoked week in high school and who studied socialism in college and who devoted their young professional lives to community organizing and similar avocations. They aren’t the bogeymen you seem to fear. They’re exceptionally good-hearted, hardworking people who have done more good with their lives than 90% of people I know.

    I mean, it’s HILARIOUS that you feel so threatened by these people. It’s like being scared of Mr. Rogers. It’s like being scared of Martin Luther King, Jr. (which your 1960s counterparts were, of course.) That’s what you don’t get.

  6. JA,
    For a guy who insists on not reading into one’s responses … “I mean, it’s HILARIOUS that you feel so threatened by these people” … you’ve now cited “fear”, “hatred”, and “threatened”. Are you just making crap up for no reason or do you arrive at those conclusions by some rancid broken hermeneutic? Where, why, and what in my writing to you get any of those terms? Let me know.

    I didn’t cite the “Alinsky” stuff nor any adjectival characterization of community organizer. One man took responsibility and helped his family get through in the absence of his father and at the same time had an unimpeachable young adult career. The other not so much. That was the effing extent of my comment. Maybe the difference is that you don’t know anyone with a past like Mr Ryan … and therefore you hate and fear him.

    That’s what you don’t get.

    No. What I don’t get is your allusions to fear and otherness. You’re making stuff up. Is that an amygdala thing?

  7. Mark,

    I was talking about the piece you linked, not you. I’m getting “fear” from the way that “socialism” and “alinskyite” etc. are thrown around like bogeymen.

    Surely you’ve heard the phrase “red scare?”

    Maybe the difference is that you don’t know anyone with a past like Mr Ryan … and therefore you hate and fear him.

    Yeah, nice try. They only thing I fear about Ryan is him getting a chance to enact his disastrous economic ideas.

    I thought his speech at the retirement community was amazing, by the way. He’s very charismatic and really top-notch at making an argument that would be convincing to those who don’t know better and won’t fact-check him.

  8. I mean, do you see the difference? I see Ryan as someone who seems like a pretty well-meaning guy with a terrible idea. The blogger you linked to seems to see Obama as a real “other.”

  9. JA,
    You were talking about the piece, not me … but you wrote “I mean, it’s HILARIOUS that you feel so threatened by these people” it seems reasonable for me to understand “you” in your speech to mean myself … or at the very least include me. Of course I’ve heard of “red scare” … I’m not sure the relevance. Seems to me, from your conversation of fearing to say things which might be interpreted as “crypto-racism” … this is akin. You aren’t afraid of crypto-socialism, while you are careful to avoid crypto-racism. On the other side of the aisle the two are swapped.

    Yes. I see a difference in their young adult and what they did in their 20s, but I’m guessing that’s not the difference you’re looking for. And I’ll certainly agree, Obama fits your Ryan description nicely. “A well meaning guy with terrible idea(s)” describes Obama to a tee. A good speaker to those who don’t know better and won’t fact check him fits too.

    No. I don’t see it in the “fear of Other” in Ms Crowley’s blog post. I don’t see fear. I don’t see “other”. I see someone unimpressed with his teens and 20s who is impressed with Mr Ryan. I think it more likely the fear thing (and “other” .. in which conservative is the other) is a projection of yours.

  10. JA,
    Red scare => fear? This is 2012, few people (and from her photo, not Ms Crowley) remember the red scare. In 2012 we despise not fear Marxists.

  11. I didn’t cite the “Alinsky” stuff nor any adjectival characterization of community organizer. One man took responsibility and helped his family get through in the absence of his father and at the same time had an unimpeachable young adult career. The other not so much. That was the effing extent of my comment. Maybe the difference is that you don’t know anyone with a past like Mr Ryan … and therefore you hate and fear him.

    Yawn, unimpeachable young adult career? Whatever that means. Obama’s mother and then grandparents were able to raise him without difficulty. It’s true Obama stated he tried drugs as a college student and viewed himself as a ‘drop out’. But that ‘dropping out’ took him through two Ivy League schools. Would that all kids ‘dropped out’ like he did. And I don’t buy for a moment Ryan didn’t try drugs of some sort thru his formative years. The piece JA objected too is hardly worth commenting on because not only is it written by a liar, it’s not even written as if it wasn’t written by a liar. It’s the type of piece the right seems to have perfected where even the people who read it can’t, won’t, even pretend they care about the truth. I suppose we can label it a type of ‘reality fan fiction’ where everyone playing the game knows it’s not the truth but would rather pretend this is the truth….

    Seems to me, from your conversation of fearing to say things which might be interpreted as “crypto-racism” … this is akin. You aren’t afraid of crypto-socialism, while you are careful to avoid crypto-racism. On the other side of the aisle the two are swapped.

    The difference is the charges of ‘crypto-racism’ are real. For example, the voter id law is objected too because its critics feel it will disenfranchise many blacks. The Zimmerman affair appeard to be a classic case where cops treat the killing of a young black man with indifference, buying without question a story that they would never have brought if the roles were reversed. Now you may challenge the facts and judgement here, but that’s not a ‘crypto argument’. You may simply disagree that the Zimmerman case wasn’t investigated enough or that the evidence was more clearly on Zimmerman’s side. But that’s and argument over specific facts.

    The ‘crypto-socialism’ class of arguments against Obama, though, live in a fact free world of either totally subjective impressions (imagining Obama as teenager or 20-something listening to ‘Marxist professors’) or facts that are just totally imagined (i.e. Obama being raised in Nigeria learning to hate Winston Churchill).

    I have previously defined the ‘Bi-partisan Fallacy’ as the false belief that a particular fault one identifies on one side of the political spectrum *must* be mirrored in exactly the same proportion on the other side. To the degree that any real MSM bias exists, it is that bias. Mark exhibits it here quite well.

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