By The Numbers

     If it cannot be expressed in figures, it is not science; it is opinion. – Robert A. Heinlein

     I only recently became aware of this Prager U video:

     It’s an excellent, facts-and-figures based refutation of the “renewable energy” con the enviro-Nazis have been promoting. And therefore, the Left has put a lot of effort into refuting it…but seldom with facts or figures. That’s an indicator to prioritize. It suggests that the available facts and figures are on the side of “conventional” energy sources – and they are.

     There are other indicators of importance, of course: the shrillness of the anti-fossil fuels community; their use of tendentious “models” that embed all manner of questionable assumptions; their habit of hiding their supposed data and falsifying the rest; their continued insistence that “we’ve got to act now!” to eliminate fossil fuels, when the available data say no such thing. Remember Al Gore’s claim that the polar ice caps and the glaciers would be melted by now, and Earth’s coastal cities, where approximately a third of Mankind resides, would be under twenty feet of water? He won an Oscar for that, didn’t he? I don’t suppose there’s any prospect of getting him to admit that he was wrong, though.

     One way to control a people is to control some vital commodity on which their lives and livelihoods depend. Dispatchable energy capacity, often abbreviated as “cap” in discussions of the Earth’s energy budget, is vital to virtually everything we do. “Cap” is essential to:

  1. Heating and cooling our homes and other environments;
  2. Operating our consumer-convenience equipment;
  3. Operating our capital equipment;
  4. Powering our vehicles.

     Those four headings subsume virtually everything of importance to human existence. Unless you’re a beach bum in some tropical land where food hangs from the trees, free for anyone to pluck and eat, you’ll almost certainly employ energy for items 1 and 2 each and every day. If you’re a worker of any sort, you’re almost certain to employ energy for items 3 and 4, as well.

     The famous “renewable” sources of wind and solar energy are only irregularly equal to items 1 and 2. They can’t cope with items 3 and 4 at all. Physics, weather and climate, and other stubborn facts of life are against it.

     But really, the enviro-Nazis aren’t against fossil fuels and nuclear power as such. Their real target is capitalism itself. The smart ones won’t say so out loud. Moreover, they’re constantly trying to distance themselves from the socialists, communists, Luddites, and “back to nature” goons who do say so out loud.

     Herewith, a few words about the criteria by which modern Man selects his energy sources. In assessing an energy source, we look for two things above all others:

  1. Concentration: that is, the amount of extractable, easily employed energy per unit mass;
  2. Undesired byproducts: otherwise known as wastes.

     As it happens, these characteristics are related. Waste output varies inversely with energy concentration. In other words, the more concentrated an energy source, the less massive its waste output tends to be. When it comes to generating electrical power, nuclear power is the indisputable champion: gigantic energy output for very small amounts of waste. We ought to be exploiting it far more than we do at present.

     But we can’t use nuclear power to propel our cars, trucks, trains, ships, and airplanes. (All right, naval warships are an exception.) What does that leave? The fossil fuels have the next greatest concentration of energy per unit mass. Moreover, we’ve gotten really good at capturing their waste products before they can foul the air or water.

     This is where the enviro-Nazis do most of their shrieking. “Sooner or later we’ll run out, and what will we do then?” they cry. But once again, the facts are against them. Each and every year, the world’s proven reserves of the fossil fuels, measured in how many years of human consumption they would support, increases. The figure currently stands at 50 years of consumption at current rates. Offshore and ocean drilling, hydrofracturing, and the recent advances in techniques for reviving “exhausted” oil wells will increase those reserves even further.

     This sort of hard data absolutely infuriates the enviro-Nazis. They’re Cause People, you see. When you undermine their Cause, you’re undermining their self-concept and sense of personal worth. That makes it personal to them – quite as personal as if you’d attacked their religion…which, in a sense, you have.

     My advice is to carry a copy of Julian Simon’s The Ultimate Resource with you wherever you go. It’s chock-full of hard data about such matters. The smarter enviro-Nazis will shy away upon seeing it in your grasp. You can hit the others with it…renewably, at that.

Another Great Meme Edition

I love memes. The idea of using graphics and a little text to convey a complex idea is genius!

Face it – MOST people find it hard in GOOD times to follow an abstract analysis, a lengthy storyline, or a political plot. In times like this, with high stress due to the economy, personal financial concerns, fear of illness striking those we love, and worry about the direction of our country – well, I have found that I have trouble lately following along with non-fiction narrative. I’ve picked up several books about The Coup, background on the political shenigans of the Left, and other densely informative text, and, to be honest, I find my attention wandering.

No reflection on the books or articles. It’s me. I’m stressed enough to not be capable, right now, to handle the mental processes that it takes.

Things NOT related to our ongoing crises, even if technical, I can handle. I plowed through a lot of documentation on Linux over the last two days to finally solve the problems I was having installing the portable hard drive to my Pi system. Finally got it going yesterday afternoon!

So, it’s not a matter of mental deterioration. It’s just stress, which makes normal brain functions temporarily quite difficult. It doesn’t matter how much you rest or sleep – the wear and tear is on the executive functions of the brain.

Take away the stress, and, after a short while, you’ll be back to normal.

So, considering that most of us are mentally fatigued, here’s a link to some terrific memes from Powerline Blog.

And, just because, here’s the QR link – in case you want to print this out and send around the hard copy.

Forked Tongues Dept.

     I didn’t bother to watch any of the “debates” among the various Democrat aspirants to the 2020 presidential nomination. Thus I was unaware of much that took place in those exchanges that would later become items of controversy. Most recently, the following surfaced:

     Yes, Gentle Reader: Kamala Harris really did say all those things about Joe Biden. You’d think she’d be unwilling to be in the same time zone with him, wouldn’t you? Well, as the saying goes, that turned out not to be the case.

     Many in the Right have speculated that Kamala Harris would be the real president during Biden’s term: a power behind the throne who’d work the senile old corruptocrat like a hand puppet. That might be so; it’s hard to tell from outside the White House. Of one thing we may be sure: Harris wanted “in,” and her one and only ingress was to accept the vice-presidential nod from a man she castigated so severely that we could easily imagine them with pistols at dawn.

     Tells you something about the importance of watching what politicians do rather than what they say, doesn’t it?

     “Sincerity is the ultimate asset. Once you can fake that, you’ve got it made.” – Originator unknown

Keep an Eye on This Committee

It’s the Republican Study Committee, and it’s headed by Rep. Jim Banks of Indiana. I took a look at what they tweeted about the COVID spending, and it’s an eye-opener (hint: print out and pass around in public places – they may be able to keep us off social media, but – so far – they can’t stop us working from door to door).

Speaking of that suggestion above, keep in mind that MOST of what is posted on social media is ignored, or scanned over, and forgotten quickly. Only those things that are particularly funny or ‘fuzzy’ will be passed on widely.

So, that means that your impact is much greater when you are the one that is passing along those screenshots and short blurbs, with links attached. Here’s a short tutorial on how to add QR code access to your Word or other Office documents.

If you, like me, are using Freeware like LibreOffice (does almost all that MS Office does, at no cost, other than voluntary donations), here’s a link to get that access within LibreOffice. For other software packages, try a search with “QR codes in _________”, replacing the ____________ with the name of your preferred program.

And, for those not realizing the power of QR, what that does is give people a way to point their phone, IPad, or tablet camera at the code, and be instantly swept away to that associated link – from the HARD COPY of the code, as well as a screenshot of it.

That’s powerful. It means that relatively non-techy people – the kind who just use a few applications, and don’t understand the term, URL – can be linked to stories/videos/news reports that uncover the stories the media does NOT want them to have access to.

Here’s a QR code for the Republican Study Group site.

Try it – use your phone, take a picture, and be taken instantly to the site. (I’m assuming that you have a QR Reader installed on your phone). By making this in a printable handout, you can print out index card-sized handouts, and help people use them to spread the word around. Virtually ALL of the younger kids use them. And, as a side benefit, take the time to install an app on their portable device, that will allow them to point and go. It makes the process a lot easier for people to check out a link, and ease is the driving feature of spreading a meme or idea.

Keepin’ it real.

New York Times technology correspondent Kevin Roose consulted some “experts” on “how we might restore a proper respect for reality.” Lord knows I’m on the edge of my OfficeMax high-speed, swivel, gaming chair when it’s time to receive guidance from NYT truth searchers. One of the experts Roose consulted is a Stanford “disinformation researcher” which is confidence-building point for me since if you can tap the thinking of a disinformation researcher and put your finger on honest-to-gosh “disinformation” then it stands to reason that what’s left is truth itself. Miller Time! and that’s a fact.

John Derbyshire is more jaded than I am and puts the damn damn on that most popular of words these days that has replaced more technical — but inadequate — terms like “lies,” “porkies,” “stretchers,” “propaganda,” and “bullshit” and is used to alert us to an entirely new, never-before-encountered phenomenon of nefarious people impossibly trying to sell us a verbal Brand X in order to convince us to place our bets on Brand X:

“Disinformation researcher”? Uh-huh. Anyone who pays attention knows that the word “disinformation” has at this point been bled dry of all honest significance. It’s just a Woke word, a CultMarx word for any true facts the Ruling Class want suppressed.[1]

Recommendations flooded in from the “experts” that a “task force” should be formed headed up by a “reality czar” to help us navigate these modern treacherous shoals of human disingenuousnessness. This would be on the order of a national Miss Manners, as I understand it, who would offer quotidian, targeted advice on what is or is not pristine in the facts and analysis departments. This would presumably put Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Amazon, the Washington Post, the New York Times, and Piers Robinson out of a job but since when did the New York Times care whose ox was gored so long as real Truth comes out the other end of the sausage machine, if I make myself clear?

Mr. Derbyshire also has some choice words on Jesus’s exquisite observation about the Pharisees’s straining at a gnat but swallowing a camel in the context of (1) the “storming” of the Capitol on January 6 and (2) the riots, looting, arson, and homicide in the runup to the election in November that so convinced the rest of the world — yet again — how vital our “leadership” really is. Highly recommended.

It’s a widespread phenom these days, this inability or studied obtuseness that prevents the compilation of lists of pressing problems in descending order of criticality. If you’ve actually bothered to read what I’ve posted over the years (sniff) you’ll recall the times I’ve mentioned Joseph Heller’s choice vignette in his novel Catch 22 where Yossarian, on leave in Italy down in the ville, witnesses a GI throw another GI out of the window and kill him. Heller describes the boots of the MPs pounding up the stairs and then the MPs burst into the room and firmly declare to Yossarian that “You’re AWOL!” The Blacks Liberating Merchandise folkspersons, the Al Sharptongues, the Maxine the Magnificents, the Sarah Jeongs, and those questing for illicit Brazillian Blowouts seem to have copied that page out of that book and focused on white people as the source of all unhappiness in this land with a secondary hatefest for Pres. Trump. Yes. If only there weren’t white people this would be an ok country. Now on to solve the problem of unemployed engineers in the Indian subcontinent.

My personal favorite in the current Steven King sh^tscape is the drama over Marjorie Taylor Greene, whom I happen to revere. (Get a load of the bills she’s introduced and her version of what patriotism and her role as a Congresswoman are! Works for me!) Anyway, she has an interesting personal history and knows a thing or two about some events in our recent past but has returned to the straight and narrow path, now presenting an image of a . . . gasp . . . real person unlike the regiments of preening, phoney baloney dimwits that play at being “influencers.” I’ll not detail any of Rep. Greene’s statements because I’ve only gotten them second and third hand but here’s my question: Which positions has she taken that are more damaging to the Nation than what eminently wise and learned Americans of the first rank have declared as sacred precious [Un]truths:

  • “nation of immigrants,”
  • “living Constitution,”
  • “structural racism,”
  • “white privilege,”
  • “responsibility to protect,”
  • “honest election,”
  • “regime change,”
  • “Assad must go,”
  • “bipartisanism,”
  • “weapons of mass destruction,”
  • “rules-based international order,”
  • “war on terror,”
  • “war on drugs,”
  • “for-profit prisons,”
  • “spirit cooking,”
  • “American exceptionalism,”
  • “nation building,”
  • “multiculturalism,”
  • “patriarchy,”
  • “gender,”
  • “diversity,”
  • “transgenderism,”
  • “insurrection,”
  • “incitement,”
  • “white supremacist,”
  • “affirmative action,”
  • “Medicare for all,”
  • “a woman’s right to choose,”
  • “women’s health,”
  • “hate speech,”
  • “terms of service violation,”
  • “stimulus,”
  • “inflation target,”
  • “Russian collusion,”
  • “Russian expansionism,”
  • “Russian aggression,”
  • “our values,”
  • “progressive,” or
  • “inclusion”?

There might be more.

Where is the pearl clutching and boo hooing about the morons who mouth that sort of garbage?

Rep. Greene made an exemplary mea culpa speech in Congress which, along with the changes she’s made in her life, would normally suffice in a country vaguely Christian to earn her a measure of charity. That is not the way the game is played though and huge energy is being and will be expended to crucify courageous, free-thinking individuals, to destroy them with gleeful, vicious explorations of every possible ad hominem angle, all the while studiously ignoring what are quaintly known as “existential threats” to the nation as it was conceived.

The fascination of the elites with “disinformation” is something that will make you lose your lunch when you contemplate that the search for the truth of any matter is the last thing that can be tolerated in America 5.0, or however far that counter has risen. The elites really are contemptible as can be seen in the performance of toad impersonator Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-MD) and the others who disgraced themselves in this video.

The nation is on the cusp of economic bankruptcy and who can say in the light of this that we’re also not facing a profound moral bankruptcy as well, one that long preceded our economic difficulties? A nation that can NOT decide what problems it is trying to solve is in deep trouble and due for a spell of high-speed travel on black ice.

Notes

[1] “American Anosognosia—the Capitol Hill ‘Insurrection,’ BLM/Antifa Riots, and Our National Reality Crisis.” By John Derbyshire, 2/6/21.

Turning It Around: The Prospects

     Paper constitutions raise smiles on the faces of those who have observed their results; and paper social systems similarly affect those who have contemplated the available evidence. How little the men who wrought the French Revolution and were chiefly concerned in setting up the new governmental apparatus, dreamt that one of the early actions of this new apparatus would be to behead them all! How little the men who drew up the American Declaration of Independence and framed the republic, anticipated that after some generations the legislature would lapse into the hands of wire-pullers; that its doings would turn upon the contests of office-seekers; that political action would be everywhere vitiated by the intrusion of a foreign element holding the balance between parties; that electors, instead of judging for themselves, would habitually be led to the polls in thousands by their “bosses”; and that respectable men would be driven out of public life by the insults and slanders of professional politicians.

     [Herbert Spencer, “From Freedom to Bondage,” 1891]

     “And are we not big enough to meet them in plain battle?”
     “We are four men, some women, and a bear.”
     “I saw the time when Logres was only myself and one man and two boys, and one of those was a churl. Yet we conquered.”
     “It could not be done now. They have an engine called the Press whereby the people are deceived. We should die without even being heard of.”

     [C. S. Lewis, That Hideous Strength]

     Many would say that the American experiment has falsified its test thesis: i.e., that a constitutional republic formed for the protection of individuals’ rights can endure. It’s an argument worth considering. We the People of the United States have meekly surrendered to a Usurper Regime that’s cheated and defrauded its way to power, is destroying our economy, and is eliminating several of our long-established rights as we speak. Yet what the Usurpers are doing is forbidden by the Constitution! How, then, are they getting away with it?

     It’s quite simple, really: A constitution, no matter how freedom-oriented or well designed, cannot enforce its own terms. There must be an external enforcement agency – and it cannot be the government itself. It can only be the people who have chartered the government and demand that it remain within its constituted bounds.

     As I’ve written before, the key to the restraint of government can only be an armed, vigilant, and freedom-loving people. If the people lack sufficient arms, or are unaware of what’s being done to them and its probable consequences, or are insufficiently attached to individual liberty as a sacred principle to rise up in its defense, they will fail to restrain the depredations of the State, whether by inability or unwillingness. That’s why totalitarians always:

  1. Target the educational and communications sectors of a nation first and foremost;
  2. Strive to divide the people, setting some against others;
  3. Forbid the private ownership of weapons.

     Items 1 and 2 have been under way for decades. The Left’s conquest of the educational and communications sectors is nearly complete. It has used those levers to create several deep divisions among us. The Usurper Administration is working on item 3. If it should succeed in disarming the citizenry, the fat lady will have sung this opera’s final aria. It could hardly be simpler. Yet it appears too complex for most Americans of today. Why?

     Bookworm has a thesis:

     I was a little girl in San Francisco in the 1960s, but I certainly remember the rebellious spirit that animated the youth of the 1960s and early 1970s. They were pushing back against the traditional values of their parents and teachers.

     In leftist Marin, though, in the first decades of the 20th century, the young people were entirely in sync with the leftist values of their parents and teachers. That appears to be true in liberal enclaves across America. It’s also the case that young people in changing communities (traditional homes, leftist teachers’ unions), will hew to their teachers’ values. My generation sneered at the teachers. (I still do because, with few exceptions, I found my children’s teachers to be singular ill-informed and not very bright.)

     I assumed that, eventually, conservativism would intrigue these young people because it was the opposite of the stifling conformity imposed on them in their communities and their homes. After all, the media, the entertainment world, and the history books constantly tell us that the youth movement in the 1960s was a rebellion against the stifling conformity of 1950s America.

     There hasn’t been a counter-revolution, though. Today’s young people are more sheeple-like even than my now-grown kids were.

     I added the emphasis.

     I’ve had little contact with teens these past couple of decades. If Bookworm is correct, there will be no pro-freedom uprising by the current crop of young Americans (i.e., the 18-34 age bracket). The best of them simply aren’t interested; the rest have their hands out for freebies. Guns? Forget that; these tykes aren’t even interested in owning a car.

     We old farts haven’t “uprisen” either. Most of us are too busy arranging to protect ourselves, our spouses, and those sheeplike kids; the rest haven’t the strength or the stamina. (I’m in the latter group.) That makes the near-term prospects for an uprising look bleak. The Usurpers will probably get most of what they want, if not all of it.

     What about the longer term? Is there no possibility of an unindoctrinated generation of pro-freedom rebels willing to risk their lives, fortunes, and sacred honor for liberty and justice?

     Where would they come from? Certainly not from our existing educational institutions. Nor could they learn what they would need from the media of today. The barons of technology would surely impede their communications, so they might not even be able to find one another. As for arms, if the Usurpers succeed in destroying private weapons rights, where would they get them?

     It’s not looking good, Gentle Reader. It looks very much as if the future of freedom is in the hands of today’s Americans: you and me. And we’ve been sitting on our hands, waiting for someone else to shoulder the burden.

     I think I’ll go bash my head against the wall for a while.

I Love the Smell of Victory in the Morning!

And, coffee, of course.

But – VICTORY?

When Trump is in Mar-a-Lago? When Biden-Harris occupy the seat of federal government?

Yes.

According to this video, a poll has reported that 70% of the GOP would consider WALKING OUT, should Trump start a 3rd party.

70%

Not to mention the huge number of Dems that are disgusted with the Democratic Left in control of the government, and their party.

So, yeah, VICTORY!

Oh, and about that coffee? I’m looking for a new coffee; the store brands I’ve been buying are just not tasting the same (even the color of the bean looks ‘off’). I like the milder blends of Starbucks, but I refuse to give them any more money.

So, in the comments, could you make some recommendations? Price is definitely a factor. There are blends I would love to buy, but – come on! $20 or more a pound?

Too rich for my blood.

Let’s Have an End to Rule by Nobility

They sure don’t act all that noble, so let’s cut out the special privileges.

Many More Questions Than Answers

This was always a strange story. The contradictions were obvious, the reports were apparently steered towards the desired end.

My take?

The Leftists wanted to take the focus off Ashli Babbit’s death. The public was starting to gain support for asking some preliminary questions:

  • Exactly WHICH officer actually fired the shot?
  • What he ordered to, or did he panic?
  • Why can’t he be named, and the public be able to find out who he was, what his record looked like, and is there any indication that this was anything other than a tragic case of accidental shooting?

Where Sicknick is concerned, there are MANY questions, and they are being buried in a rush to label the Capitol crowd as murderers. Not an accident, but deliberate, 1st degree murder.

This is a good explanation of the facts and conflicting stories as they are currently known.

The most disturbing part? The body was cremated. No further forensic investigation can be done. And, we all know how easy it is to bury/fake documentation. And, witnesses.

We Really Can’t Help It…

     …we humans have a hard time separating people’s personalities and characters from our opinions of the ideas they espouse. We tend to assess the validity of a Cause according to the strengths and weaknesses of those who promote it: their public conduct, their cumulative reputations, and whatever we can learn about their pasts. The squib below cites one variety of this: the doom-shouter who seeks to panic others into important decisions without taking time for study and thought.

     Another variation is the apologist who seeks to blame the failures of his theses on the behavior of others. I’ve seen this in more settings than I can remember offhand. In a recent instance, a Republican partisan sought to blame the loss of a GOP Congressional candidate he supported on – drum roll, please – the Libertarian candidate and those who voted for him! Those votes were “stolen” from the Republican, you see. If it weren’t for his Libertarian opponent, those voters would have…what’s that you say? They wouldn’t necessarily have voted for the Republican? They might have voted for some other minor-party candidate? They might have stayed home?? Great God in heaven!

     Such attempts to transfer the blame for one’s troubles onto others’ shoulders is common enough in politics. But it does the self-exculpator no good at all. Indeed, it diminishes his reputation for future contests.

     Tom Knighton shows us an ideologically flavored case:

     The Socialist Party isn’t much of a political party. As far as electoral gains go, they make the Libertarian Party look downright competent.

     However, like many small political parties, they use social media to get their ideas out into the public consciousness.

     And, because they’re socialists, they post things like this:

     In other words, government-run healthcare fails because of capitalism.

     You really have to wonder. If you’re conscious of your own reactions to that sort of blame-shifting, that is. But it’s been a feature of socialist economies for decades. The Soviet Union, Red China, Cuba, North Korea, socialist Venezuela all blamed their economic failures on “imperialism,” “capitalist saboteurs,” and the like. It’s never the fault of socialism, you see. That’s simply unthinkable.

     Have a snippet from the great Gregory Benford’s somewhat neglected novel Against Infinity:

     “Every civilization up until now has evolved because of internal contradictions — conflicts within it that forced change. Capitalism proceeded by contradiction to produce socialism — it was inevitable….
     “The Marxists thought that under socialism, alienation and class warfare would stop….The administrators faced a problem Marxism never discussed: how well socialism works. What is the good of being exactly equal to everybody else, if that means you have to be poor?…
     “So to stop socialism from sinking into the mud, the bureaucrats had to promote expansion — off-planet, out into the system. But socialism is an historical necessity that arises when you get a certain density of population. Once people spread out….
     “And therein lies the true comedy….You see, the Marxists always assumed that the next step would complete the cycle of contradiction and change. It is so amusing! Because they could imagine no further change beyond socialism, they assumed — without thinking — that there would be none. They didn’t notice that the dialectical model predicts no Final Revolution….There is instead an equilibrium between the two forms. So we get humankind — with refined, humanitarian socialism in the older, crowded core. And capitalism sprouting up like weeds at the edge.”

     In other words, if it weren’t for the existence of capitalist economies that stand ready to rescue socialist ones from their failures, the socialist economies would collapse at once. The socialist planners and oligarches of Benford’s novel were at least realistic enough to admit it. But our contemporary socialists are unwilling to do so. Among other things, it would wound them in their self-righteousness.

     There’s another clue to the validity of a Cause: whether its promoters posture as morally superior to those who question their schemes. People who are sincere about what they espouse should admit to human fallibility – to the possibility that they might be wrong. But that, too, is rare among ardent Cause People. The ones who strive to stampede you into a highly committal decision without taking time to study and think are the worst of the lot. They combine the subtlety of the cattle prod with the superciliousness of the bullhorn-wielding, fire-and-brimstone-shouting, street-corner preacher.

     Verbum sat sapienti.

Ace Does It Again

     Striking the jugular in a minimum of words is becoming his specialty:

     [O]nly the dishonest attempt to panic other people into making decisions.

     Please read the whole column. Now, Gentle Reader: Which side of the political spectrum has made a specialty of screaming that “There’s no time to waste!” and “We’ve got to act now!” Given what has followed from their many “crises,” can you think of a single reason to grant them the smallest shred of credibility?

     Americans’ ears and psyches are becoming numb to the Left’s crisis-shouting. That’s only to be expected…but I shiver to think what it might mean should a genuine crisis arise that really does demand something like immediate action.

Karma Bites Another Woke A$$

This time, Bruce Springsteen.

Doesn’t he know that driving recklessly offends Mother Gaia?

The Rubin Report

I’ve been watching his stuff, and he is really good. Not over the top, just what we from the middle of the country call – “Midwest Normal”.

You know – typical Deplorables.

And the Rubin Report is only 1/2 an hour, so – doesn’t take up too much of the day.

Other videos you will want to put on your ‘must-see’ list:

Ronald Reagan on Johnny Carson, discussing the budget, among other things.

Kurt Russell on Gun Control – amazingly, for a Hollywood actor, he’s remarkably sensible.

Not Important, Just Funny

Religion and Realism in Fiction

     There’s “religious fiction,” of course. Everyone is aware of the “Left Behind” series, which despite its many flaws was widely read and applauded. We also have the works of writers such as C. S. Lewis, Taylor Caldwell, Frank Peretti, Ted Dekker, Karen Kingsbury, and others. Their novels are explicitly religious, almost polemic about the faiths they uphold and promote. Their readers tend to be equally religious and passionate about it.

     There’s also completely secular fiction, in which religion has no place whatsoever. Innumerable novelists write this sort of tale. Their characters are never depicted in a church or temple, in prayer, or in worship of any other form. While some of their readers might be as religious as the devotees of the writers in the previous paragraph, surely they’re not there for a religious message, as there won’t be any.

     Tales that fall between those two poles – i.e., stories whose characters do allow religion a place in their lives, though it doesn’t utterly dominate the tale being told – are exceedingly rare in contemporary fiction. When we consider that most Americans do have a religion of some kind and do give it some portion of their daily or weekly attention, the paucity of such stories seems rather strange.

     If Americans are largely believers of some kind, wouldn’t fiction that allows religion a place be more realistic than either the religion-dominant narratives or the utterly secular, religion-never-mentioned variety? It seems logical – which might be the first hint of an explanation for the scarcity of such tales.

     The first demand of the reader of fiction is for entertainment. Religious settings and practices are almost antithetical to entertainment. Alongside that, the typical reader doesn’t pick up a novel to read about himself or his own life. He has at least some desire to escape: to depart from the “real” world he inhabits and to spend some time in another. So the omission of certain aspects of “real life” might be an asset to the storyteller.

     All the same, there’s something not quite right about the total absence of religious ideas and practices from fiction other than the explicitly polemic sort. After all, religion is one of the most important of the forces that have shaped human history. Depicting crises in the lives of persons who sincerely hold to a recognized religious faith, and showing how their faiths can assist or impede them in coping with those crises, is one of my major reasons for writing. As I have a hard time naming another writer who does so, it can make me feel rather alone.

     Just now I’m reading a first-contact novel, Revelations by Robert Sells, in which the religious convictions of certain participants play a significant role. I’m not yet ready to recommend it, but we shall see. At least it includes persons with religious convictions that matter to them enough to act upon them. They don’t just sit around fingering their rosaries. And in this Sells’s tale strikes me as more realistic than not, despite its science-fictional premises.

Just Catching Up on the News

I’ve been under some time pressure. Yesterday was the start of a virtual course for a local organization, and it took a certain amount of time to prepare for it. With that first class done, I can better target the plans for the next 3 weeks. It should be easier from now on.

I also have been chipping away at CEUs for insurance license renewal. I need to finish over the next month, so I can renew without a problem. Again, somewhat time-consuming, but not that difficult.

Which leaves my upcoming PT appointments; I see the Ortho guy today, to get the referral, then tomorrow start the grind. I’ve done this for a few other injuries in the past. It’s not difficult, but it does take regular adherence to the program.

However, at the end of this cycle, I should be stronger and better able to work on further fitness goals.

With all that on my plate, it’s no surprise that I’ve pretty much ignored current events. Failure to shut down the impeachment trial was a slam-dunk for the Dems/Dems-Lite (otherwise known as RINOs). It says something about the current state of the GOP when the best pushback against this extra-legal action is from Rand Paul, a Libertarian. You might THINK that the GOP would see supporting the President, and Constitutional protections, as critical.

You would be wrong. The GOP politicians and administrators of the party structure see Trump and his supporters as a barrier to their function, not a benefit.

The first thing to do after the trial – no matter how it turns out, is to get involved at the local level in politics. Know who the influential people are, and start networking with those who want to get these RINOs OUT. It makes no sense to say, well, at least the GOP controls that vote, if the vote is a Dem-Lite one.

You might want to read this essay in The Tablet – it identifies the entangled entities that lay behind the Push-Trump-Movement. I hate to say it, as it almost sound conspiratorial, but we have to uproot the Elite that stand to gain from the impoverishment and political strangulation of The Normals. That means, if someone is working ‘with’ – really, FOR, China, they need to be exposed, de-fanged, and kept from exercising their influence for a foreign power.

Sign me up!!

Too Important Not To Publicize

     “When a man shows you who he is, believe him.” – Maya Angelou

     Here is Massachusetts’ Undersecretary for Climate Change David Ismay, showing you exactly who and what he is: a totalitarian who would rather that we freeze to death, and sacrifice forever the power to go where we please, when we please, than admit that his “climate change” horseshit is…well…horseshit:

     I’ve downloaded the video, in case YouTube decides to delete it.

     Ismay and his ilk are aspiring tyrants who want complete control over every aspect of your life. Never, ever imagine otherwise.

NOOO!

It’s back! And bigger than ever!

What must I do to be free of it?

The Sacrament Of The Hour

     For a long time, I’ve referred to abortion as “the sacrament of the Left.” Having an abortion, or having had one in the past, is one of the ways a woman establishes her bona fides as a trustworthy (?) leftist. (Men who are responsible for pregnancies terminated via abortion receive a “derived” form of credibility…as long as they never, ever say anything negative about “her” decision.) A woman who’s never had one is regarded far more warily by her leftist acquaintances. A woman who’s at all dubious about “a woman’s right to choose” is viewed as a vampire would view crucifixes and holy water.

     But there’s a problem before the Left. The percent of abortions being sought by older women is increasing, while the percent sought by younger women, including the unmarried, is declining. It seems that the decline American reproductive rates and the declines in premarital and extramarital sex are putting something of a squeeze on the Left’s recruiting. The future isn’t looking too bright.

     So a new sacrament is needed. And mirabile dictu! One has arisen just in the nick of time: Vaccination against the Wuhan Virus!

     We’ve spoken of the masking mania as virtue signaling, and it surely is. It’s well established that except for respirator masks that virtually no one is wearing, masking does nothing to impede the transmission of the Chinese Lung Rot virus or any other. But while wearing a mask does nothing to slow the spread of the Kung Flu, it signals that you care. You’re being socially responsible. Those you encounter can count on you to “come through” when it matters.

     Still, a great many people are getting very tired of masking. Increasing numbers of Americans are refusing to go along with the “mandates.” Ever more states and localities are separating themselves from the masking mania and declaring the whole thing a matter of individual choice…which it should have been from the start. So the virtue-signalers and loyalty assessors clearly need something new, and the vaccines have come along at just the right moment.

     So the Left will obviously regard an article like this one as a dagger to the heart. Wherever it appears, it will be condemned as the vilest sort of pro-illness slime. Thou shalt not denigrate our Sacrament! Legislators will be approached about what might be done to “limit its reach.” I’d be entirely unsurprised were YouTwitFace – that’s the YouTube / Twitter / Facebook conglomerate – to refuse to allow it to appear on their “platforms.” There may even be attempts to sue the author for libel. (Of whom? Don’t bother us with details, quibbler; we’re The Anointed and we make the rules here.)

     Spread it around, Gentle Readers. Please spread it around. Remember that the “medical establishment” condemned attempts to use hydroxychloroquine, zithromax, and ivermectin as anti-WuFlu treatments…and now the studies that refute their condemnations are multiplying like toadstools.

     We who blog may be the last defenses against the flood of disinformation by which the Left hopes to subjugate the country. Don’t let them get away with it. Hold your head high.

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