Normally I wouldn’t offer a thoughtful response to a bunch of grown men talking like fourteen-year-old schoolgirls gossiping at recess. (Really, M. Murcek? Jo Jorgensen looks like a man? Please.) But as the moderators can confirm, I’ve been reading and contributing to Rantburg since nearly the beginning; longer than most of you, in fact. Admittedly I mostly read each day and very occasionally comment rather than posting articles. But I’ve been here, reading and following your arguments. So now I’ll rant for the first time in years.
Many of you need to take the clear pill, step back for a few moments, take a view so long that it’s nearly orbital, and really think about the state of American politics right now. Have a cold, hard look at our two party system, and realize that it’s entered its final death spiral. The Democratic and Republican parties have the American people – all of us, regardless of our differences – locked into a false Manichean binary paradigm that’s little better than a single party totalitarian state. We are constantly forces to conceptualize issues as if there can only be two opinions – only two rational opinions in all of politics - and then polarize and take sides against one another based on that false paradigm. It’s garbage. It’s cheap authoritarian memetics designed to keep the population locked into a useful cycle of fear. Because there are, in fact, more than two ways of looking at problems. And you all know it.
People are Republicans because they’re terrified of the Democrats, and vice-versa. Nobody has any real affection for either party. It’s just the “way it is” - and wanting to break out of Late Stage Two Party System is seen as madness or treason. Which is in and of itself madness because every other free nation on earth has more than two functional political parties. (Really. I’ve been out of The Shire before, and I can attest that we’re not like the rest of Middle Earth.) But that attitude helps to perpetuate a system which simulates the effects of a single party system, while keeping up the mirage of being democratic to the public. And that system is fixed in such a way that it’s nearly impossible for an alternate political party to win a race, even at a local level. That’s not freedom. It’s nearly Soviet. It’s a sick joke – and the American people are its straight man, year after year.
I’m half a century old, and for thirty years of that I’ve been a small “l” libertarian who felt it morally necessary to be either a registered Democrat or, as I got older, a Republican. Because that’s the way the system works, primary voting matters, one has to be pragmatic, “this is the most consequential election in history,” etc etc ad nausium. But I’m done with that. I’m done with constantly favoring cynicism over idealism. So now I’m a large “L” Libertarian; because I am one, and because that’s the best option I’ve got to oppose in some small way a political system that’s so glaringly obviously reached it’s terminal end game. And when the kooks in the Libertarian party take the stage to say their part, I don’t cringe as hard as I used to as a Republican or Democrat. (Which was very hard indeed.)
I freely admit that I would rather Trump be president than Biden. But it’s a devil’s bargain; it’s glaringly obvious that neither of them should hold the presidency. And the fact that those are our choices, rationally looked at from a neutral perspective, means that the United States needs more than two functional political parties. The Libertarian, Green, and Constitution parties might not be ideal vessels of that badly needed change; but they’re what there is to work with right now. Because we’re being pushed by the inevitable logic of the two party system into another civil war we don’t need to have, and that will have as many unforeseen long-term consequences to our society as the last one.
And a final point. If Hegel and Marx were right and history is an endless cycle of revolution, reaction, and synthesis, what grows out of that cycle in 2020 when the synthesizing components are nationalism (the Republicans) and socialism (the Democrats)? Is it “cold fucking nuts” to not want to vote to further perpetuate that particular cycle?
SM, Trump is a Capitalist. Never a politician. After the professional politicians of all stripes and colors became unified in DC against capitalism, Americans defied them by electing the most famous Capitalist, non professional swamp politician of our time, Donald J Trump.
[Dhaka Tribune] The Dhaka Metropolitan Police (DMP) commissioner has transferred six police officers, including a deputy commissioner (DC) of DMP Mirpur Division, over the bomb blast at Pallabi police station in Dhaka on July 29. The explosion had injured four officers and one other.
DMP Commissioner Md Shafiqul Islam on Saturday transferred Mirpur division DC Mostak Ahmed and Nazrul Islam, officer-in-charge (OC) of Pallabi police station, to other posts through an official order.
Police sources said there is an allegation that the mishandling of explosives in Pallabi police station on the morning of July 29 had led to the blast, after police claimed to have arrested three goons from the Kalshi area.
However, family members of three arrested allege that they had been picked up a few days earlier.
DMP has formed a probe committee over the blast incident and the transfer orders were issued with the investigation ongoing.
However, DMP DC (Media) Walid Hossain said it was all part of routine transfers and the investigation was yet to be completed.
Pallabi police station OC Nazrul Islam (transferred) told Dhaka Tribune on July 29 that a police team recovered the bomb, which was hidden inside a digital weighing machine commonly used in general stores, during an operation in Pallabi's Kalshi area early on Wednesday. Three local criminals were also arrested during the operation. "Into th' paddy wagon wit' yez! C'mon! Move along!"
The bomb accidentally went off when the policemen tried to defuse it at the police station. "Piece of cake! Here, lemme just tug this here little wire [KABOOM!]"
All the injured were initially admitted to Dhaka Medical College Hospital (DMCH). "Aaaiiieee! I am undone!"
"Don't be so dramatic! Here, lemme just pull this here thing out and..."
"Young Doctor Md Kildare here will just stitch up ... whatever that is."
The incident took place against the backdrop of recent intelligence reports suggesting the members of New JMB, who follow Islamic State (IS) ideology, would try to carry out attacks in Bangladesh, including against police establishments, ahead of Eid-ul-Azha. However, the authorities concerned have denied the involvement of militants in the incident and suspect that it was the work of local criminal groups. "Nar. They ain't terrorists. They're just goons."
"Can you define the difference?"
"No membership cards."
DMP Additional Commissioner Krishna Pada Roy said on July 29: “Recently, a group of criminals have been committing different crimes in the Mirpur region. "What crimes?"
"A team led by the Mirpur DC was trying to nab them for several days. "Calling all cars! Be on the lookout for goons!"
''Acting on a tip-off, Pallabi police arrested three members of the group near Kalshi cemetery at around 2am, while the other members managed to flee. "Flee! Flee for your lives! It is the law!"
"The trio had firearms, four bullets and a device that looked like a weighing machine in their possession.'' "Boss! Boss! Gimme a bullet!"
"No! You hold the weighing machine! And whatever you do, don't drop it!"
The weighing machine seemed suspicious, which was why the police called the bomb disposal unit. "A weighing machine?"
"Yes. It's a... ummm... gift!"
"For Mister Big!"
"Nar. He's already got a weighing machine!"
A member of the bomb disposal unit came to the station and analysed the device. "Bomb squad! Maake way! Make way!"
Later, he sought help from a member of the unit specialised in defusing bombs and asked him to come to the station with a few more tools. "I thought you were with the bomb squad?"
"Yeah, but I don't defuse weighing machines. That takes a specialist!"
Sea ports administration of Ukraine says that almost 10 000 tonnes of ammonium nitrate that is being stored at pier 1 and 2 of Yuzhi port near Odesa is totally safe cause of "Big-bags" pic.twitter.com/rxftR5TbKB
Mr, Wife says Big Bag is a technical term, also known as a Super Sack. They are sewn polypropylene or canvas containers for powders, the base 1 square meter, 1-1.5 meters high. They are normally stored two to three layers high, in fancier warehouses on racks but otherwise just stacked neatly and tightly together.
He says the pictures from Beirut show material stored exactly that way in Big Bags.
But there are rules about how to store explosive materials in bulk — amount per storage space, ventilation, and so forth, in order to prevent it exploding. It has nothing to do with the container itself, which are not intended to prevent such things. The photos in the tweet look like a stock photo to him.
#BREAKING Authorities in Belarus detained one of the opposition leaders Maria Kolesnikova, hours before the elections. More than 1,300 people have been detained in an attempt to clamp down on street protests that pose the biggest challenge to Lukashenko's rule
[NationalReview] The U.S. unemployment rate dropped from 11.1 percent to 10.2 percent in July, beating economists’ predictions even as many states have paused or reversed their reopenings in light of coronavirus (aka COVID19 or Chinese Plague) ...the twenty first century equivalent of bubonic plague, only instead of killing off a third of the population of Europe it kills 3.4 percent of those who notice they have it. It seems to be fond of the elderly, especially Iranian politicians and holy men... case spikes.
Employers added 1.8 million jobs in July, according to the Labor Department’s Friday jobs report, a significant slowing down from the 4.8 million jobs created in June, which was the highest recorded. While the economy has recovered 42 percent of the 22 million jobs it lost during the pandemic over the past three months, there are still 10.6 million more unemployed Americans today than there were in February.
Economists had expected unemployment to drop to 10.5 percent and for the economy to have added 1.6 million jobs in July, according to a survey by Refinitiv.
[YNet] - Struggling to contain a second wave of the coronavirus, Israel's ministerial committee on handling the pandemic on Sunday decided to reinstate some of the earlier restrictions that had been lifted, in an attempt to slow the spread of the pathogen.
Ministers decided to once again restrict the number of people allowed to travel in a car to three, including the driver; extend a ban on more than 10 people at any indoor gatherings, including restaurants and synagogues, while outdoor meetings will be limited to no more than 20 people at a time.
Closures will also be reimposed on all nightclubs, bars, event halls, cultural venues, water parks and amusement parks.
Existing restrictions on public events, including conventions, parties, festivals and organized trips, will be extended until further notice.
...Regional health officials will also be empowered to close down any businesses found in violation of the directives.
Ministers also decided to task local municipalities with the responsibility of erecting signs in public areas reminding residents of social distancing regulations and the requirement to wear masks.
Israel’s coronavirus death toll edges near 600 while the number of patients in need of ventilators had seen a 25% increase in the past nine days.
Since the first coronavirus case in February, the country's infection tally stands at 82,515.
This sums up the "Trump disapproval rating" on chinavirus (or any disapproval rating for that matter.) Yes, some people feel he's mishandling it on the downside. The poll assumes that's everyone. In reality, a good percentage of those disapproves think he's mishandling it on the upside.
The quarantine4eveha religionist class is sure Gates has a better answer.
Posted by: M. Murcek ||
08/09/2020 14:15 Comments ||
Facts about chinavirus crisis you will not see in the media:
There will be no reliable numbers on infections / hospitilizations / fatalities due to CV alone. Ever.
The worst numbers available will be published.
You will not see an interview with anyone who has not directly been in contact with a CV "sufferer."
Quarantine4Eveah and maskholes will fulminate any time any questions are asked.
Posted by: M. Murcek ||
08/09/2020 14:23 Comments ||
Bill Gates' peenie weenie will be sucked around the clock by the usual suspects.
Posted by: M. Murcek ||
08/09/2020 14:26 Comments ||
A question for Mr. Gates is anybody else’s test protocol better than America’s, or are they all below his standard?
Speaking of garbage, a quick review of face diapers may be in order, brought to you by the California Department of Health: Wildfire Smoke FAQs
"Should I wear a mask during a wildfire, even if it's not really smoky where I am?
Surgical masks, dust masks, bandanas or other face coverings do not offer protection from particle pollution. Inexpensive paper "comfort" or "dust" masks commonly found at hardware stores are designed to trap large particles and do not provide enough protection for your lungs.
Mask use may give the wearer a false sense of security, which might encourage too much physical activity and time spent outdoors. Also, wearing a mask may actually be harmful to some people with heart or lung disease because it can make the lungs work harder to breathe."
So, they can't keep out smoke but, somehow, keep out/in viruses?
[NYPOST] Political correctness has now expanded to space, where NASA says planets, galaxies and other heavenly bodies will no longer be referred to by "offensive" nicknames.
In a blurb Thursday, the space agency said that all planets and heavenly bodies will be referred only to by their scientific names, the Houston Chronicle reported.
Under the new rules, the "Eskimo Nebula," discovered in 1787 by William Hershel, will only be referred to as NGC 2392.
The so-called "Siamese Twins Galaxy" will likewise be known only as NGC 4567 and NGC 4568.
"As the scientific community works to identify and address systemic discrimination and inequality in all aspects of the field, it has become clear that certain cosmic nicknames are not only insensitive but can be actively harmful," the agency said in a news release.
"NASA is examining its use of unofficial terminology for cosmic objects as part of its commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion."
NASA’s Associate Administrator for Diversity and Equal Opportunity, Stephen T. Shih agreed, saying "These nicknames and terms may have historical or culture connotations that are objectionable or unwelcoming, and NASA is strongly committed to addressing them."
NASA’s Associate Administrator for Diversity and Equal Opportunity, Stephen T. Shih....
Sounds like someone that should be terminated, with their whole staff, as being unnecessary for NASA's core function.
A multi-volume chronology and reference guide set detailing three years of the Mexican Drug War between 2010 and 2012.
Rantburg.com and borderlandbeat.com correspondent and author Chris Covert presents his first non-fiction work detailing
the drug and gang related violence in Mexico.
Chris gives us Mexican press dispatches of drug and gang war violence
over three years, presented in a multi volume set intended to chronicle the death, violence and mayhem which has
dominated Mexico for six years.