It has come to this

 

“Stop Islam”. No equivocation, no pussy-footing, no mincing words. “Stop Islam”. This in the country which produced Baruch Spinoza, gave rise to Amsterdam, and welcomed religious refugees from all over Europe even at the height of 17th century religious warfare.

The Daily Mail reports that the Turkish foreign minister has said that “Dutch anti-Islam politician Geert Wilders’ views were shared by all rival parties and were pushing Europe towards ‘wars of religion’.”

In short, all you Dutch white people are the same, social democrats, liberals, greenies, nationalists.
The outrage of the Left at Wilders (rightwing! extremist!) is well captured by Steve Sailer’s commentary in TakiMag this week.

Congressman Steve King (R-IA) has noticed just how extremist today’s respectable conventional wisdom has become. So King has been exercising a Trump-like knack for trolling the Establishment with blunt truths that enrage goodthinkers into revealing just how much their worldview is founded upon hatred of average Americans.

Over the weekend, King tweeted:

[Geert] Wilders understands that culture and demographics are our destiny. We can’t restore our civilization with somebody else’s babies.

Every time I try to think of myself as a moderate, along comes the frantic, hysterical reaction to obvious truths such Steve King just issued. I find myself asking, as I have occasion to do nearly every day, why is there is such anti-white animus from white people? I understand it coming from professional race grievors, even if it is the product of excessive tolerance by whites for subsidized attacks on ‘white’ civilization. But why is our civilization- yours and mine – so bent on self destruction?

Why is the statement, that “you cannot restore our civilization with someone else’s babies?” so electrifyingly horrid to the immense crowd of anti-white whites? I think these are the reasons.

First, because it is irrefutably true. Second, because it refers to the consequences of abortion, reduced fertility, and demographic collapse that feminism – for want of a better word – has engendered, but will not own up to. Third because it asserts that there might actually be such as thing as “our” civilization, which might have a racial or ethnic basis.

Touching three electrified rails at the same time!

I keep seeing this Thing, and I do not know what it is in essence, but in its effects, it is

  • anti-white
  • anti-male
  • anti-Christian

Yet I suspect that if this civilization had been founded by the female, the racially Mongol, and the Buddhist religion, then the Thing of which I speak would be equally anti-female, anti-racially Mongol, and anti-Buddhist. For myself it seems to be an inchoate rage of people who were never spanked, loved, restrained, and held to any standard of manners and comportment..

Smug, vain and stupid

 

There is a brand of journalist who can be relied upon always to kick the man who is down, and justify doing it because…the man is a dolt for being down – for the crime of not being Liberal,  Democratic, or in power. Today’s exemplar of the species is Kelly McParland, who spent the period before the US election reviling Trump and extolling Hillary. He can be relied upon to opine that all attempts by the Canadian Conservative party to defeat the Liberals are likewise futile. His idea seems to be that all parties and persons seeking power and who are not liberals are morally mistaken and deserve derision and defeat, and that it is his job as journalist to supply the first so as to ensure the second.

Today’s installment of McParland’s power worship illustrates well my thesis.

“How do the Liberals get away with this?”, he asks.

Stephen Harper introduces a take it or leave it funding formula for health care, which is widely derided by the provinces and is treated as another example of Harper’s arrogance by the press. The Liberals do the same, and this time, says McParland, “the premiers are feigning enthusiasm at having been soundly outsmarted.” Actions that had been held to be brutish when taken by the Conservatives amounted to outsmarting, when done by Liberals. Identical approach, wholly different judgments. Why?

The explanation why people accept this blather from the Liberals, he says, is that “people like to be stroked,” and he continues:

Provincial leaders enjoy having Ottawa put on a show of respect, even while working feverishly to outflank them. It’s probably far too late in the game for Tories to start presenting themselves as boy scouts ever on the lookout for kittens to rescue. They’d probably never be able to maintain the sincere visage needed to put across the ruse in any case. The Liberals got there long before them, and are so skilled in the performance that most of them probably believe they really mean it. That’s the sort of deception that’s really hard to beat.

There is of course a perfectly obvious explanation, and one that rings truer to the facts than McParland’s weak attempt at secretly admiring what he professes to chastise.

It is not that the Liberals are boy scouts looking for kittens to rescue. It is that the media portray them as such, every day. The Liberals debauch the economy (viz. capital gains tax, overspending) and that’s okay. They muscle local Liberal candidates out of contention and replace them with their appointees, while they prattle on about diversity and inclusiveness. That’s just the Liberals being their true selves, and is that not wonderful, asks the media? Liberals are doing what they cannot help themselves but do, because they believe themselves to be the governing class and the media are, by and large, their lackeys.

It has not occurred to McParland that he is describing accurately the effects of pro-Liberal media bias.  That would require some self awareness.

 

“We used to be the filter”

 

I was listening today to a journalist whom I rather like and do not agree with, Susan Delacourt. It was at a conference on digital governance. (Yes, cynics, I can see your eyes rolling). Susan is a decent sort of leftie, and in this case I use her to illustrate an issue about how the media have changed.

Her source of concern was a demonstration that occurred in Toronto recently where a bunch of Canadians were ranting about Islam, with the fear that some parliamentary motion was going to be the first step in the imposition of sharia law in Ontario.

Her comment on the issue of the media’s lack of control was this:

“We used to be the filter” and she added, sotto voce, “we have to go back to being the filter”. She said that, years ago, the racist rantings of a group of Ontarians upset about Islam, or anything else for that matter,  would simply not receive wider circulation. Now everything is on YouTube. To find the clip above I simply entered “Toronto meeting Islam parliamentary motion”.

The upside of the digital revolution has been the changed media landscape; the downside has been the same. Nothing can be stopped any longer from being published. No locker room talk of 15 years ago can escape it. No  picture of anyone with a dick in their mouth. No careless word, no angry remonstrance. No intemperate remark goes unpublished.  There is no filter any more. You cannot “pull a story”. There is no central control, there is no fixed set of reporters, editors and news outlets. Google has sucked the revenues out of the newspaper business. Reporters are working faster to shorter deadlines for less money, with no time to develop a source, correct an error, or get it right.

As Blair Atholl once remarked, the printing press had a five hundred year run. The 19th century hot linotype machine defined the range and circulation of the news-paper. As an industrial structure it is passing out of existence.

The result has been the diminishment of the status of the reporter, the media outlet, and the editor, as well as the elimination of thousands of newspaper jobs. News gathering is much more do-it-yourself. Citizen empowerment means any bozo can upload something to YouTube, and does.

But the upside has been the lessening of thought and speech controls. People who are pissed off about Islam can say so now. The “facts” of global warming can be disputed. The people against the European Union can reach out to one another. Geert Wilders, Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Pat Condell, Nigel Farage, Trump: people that the media would like to turn off, not record, not hear from: they cannot be censored any longer.

The interesting thing about today’s comment from Ms. Delacourt was her frank admission that they used to practice censorship and would like to do so again. For better or worse, the days are gone when the bien-pensant media class exercized censorship, try as they might to restore it.

The battle over Trump has been as much about the by-passing of media controls as it has been about Republican versus Democrat. As we have seen, those who hate Trump go ballistic at every mis-statement, such as for example, his reference to “trouble last night in Sweden”, and they miss the main point that everyone else seems able to understand, that Sweden is in dire straits because of too many uncivilized Islamic immigrants. They strain at a gnat and swallow a camel.

Moreover, the long-term suppression by the bien-pensants of what they believed people simply should not hear or see, was the cause of the build-up of popular resentment of the media. The job of selection, analysis, and assessment has passed out of the hands of a clerisy into the hands of the people. For better or worse. I say: for the better.

#ObamaGate, couple of thoughts to ponder

Fact: NYT, Jan 19, 2017

American law enforcement and intelligence agencies are examining intercepted communications and financial transactions as part of a broad investigation into possible links between Russian officials and associates of President-elect Donald J. Trump, including his former campaign chairman Paul Manafort, current and former senior American officials said.

With visceral hatred for Trump emanating from the Deep State and open collusion between the MSM and law enforcement & intelligence agencies, why is it that we haven’t heard anything more than “oh, this Trump guy met the Russian ambassador”? Is that the best that Democrats can do?

Fact: Whitewater investigation ended with a blue dress

Where will this investigation end up?

Japanese extremism

The Japanese, I have discovered, have only one standard, and that is – perfection. When, after WW2, they were told by American engineers that they could allow a 1% imperfection rate into the manufacture of screws, they looked at themselves and wondered how to engineer a 1% defect rate into what was already perfect.

The Tokyo String Quartet, Tokyo guitar quartet, Tokyo Bach choir: they all play their selected western classical music perfectly. Japanese cars – we all know how they set the standard for defect-free manufacturing.

And now comes news of the Japanese hoarder of pornography, who was buried under six tons of pornographic magazines. I understand. It was a particularly Japanese obsession, not in his taste, but in the devotion he showed to collecting everything.

I cite the infallible collector of the world’s oddities, the Daily Mail:

 

A lonely Japanese man who amassed more than six tons of porn died when a huge pile of magazines fell on top of him.

And even more tragically, the man’s body was only discovered six months later when the landlord entered the flat to find out why the rent had not been paid.

The man’s lowly death was revealed by a member of the cleaning team, who said his company had been hired to remove the magazines discreetly in a way that would not be noticed by neighbours and the man’s family to save them from the shame.

The kitchen of the Japanese man whose body was recovered from under a six-ton pile of porn
How Japanese can you get?
  • The landlord waited six months before acting (as to do otherwise might impugn the honour of the lessee)
  • The cleaning staff sought to spare the family and neighbours the shame of the discovery.

Japan is a pagan shame and honour society, in which Buddhism and Christianity are important but definitely not the mainstream. As I have remarked before, Shinto is a religion unbothered by any conception of the Deity. But shame and honour: these people understand those feelings to the core of their beings.

All this is carefully explained in Ruth Benedict’s Chrysanthemum and the Sword

As to the porn-stasher, consider him an example of the Japanese penchant for perfection, in this case, for collecting the complete works of Japanese pornographers.

The Trump-Putin obsession of the Democrats

Three data points start today’s posting. I have just read carefully the piece in the New Yorker called Trump,  Putin and the New Cold War, by its Evan Osnos, David Remnick, and Joshua Yaffa. And with greater pleasure I have read Fred Reed’s A Budget without Russians. We will get to them in a moment. My third piece of information came from a conversation with a senior counsel to Hillary’s campaign last August, 2016,  when it was virtually certain that Hillary was about to win. Let’s just call him the Counsellor. He was purring like a cat at the prospect of power and his role in the new dispensation.

The Counsellor’s views seemed to me strange at the time, indeed they were scarcely credible. He seemed intent on a revival of the Cold War and, perhaps more strange, a pro-Iranian, anti-Turkish position. It seemed reasonable to infer that, if Hillary had won, and the Counsellor had a senior position  in the Administration, then  the Clinton administration would be playing geo-politics with these objectives in mind:

  • keeping Russia small and weak;
  • assisting the Iranians (Shiites) to dominate the Sunni Arabs;
  • and doing their best to undermine Turkey, up to and including reducing its territorial extent.

What struck me about the Counsellor’s views, apart from the strangeness of pivoting in favour of Iran and against the Sunnis, was how belligerent this position was. It seemed bent on fomenting real trouble throughout the  near and middle east. By contrast,  Trump’s erratic behaviour seems little more than shaking the tree for a more favourable outcome to any bargaining that might go on. His apparent liking for a Putin – up to a point – seems no more than making nice with a guy from whom you expect to get something you want in negotiations.

Maybe I mistake the nature of the conversation with the Counsellor, and exaggerate his possible role in the Hillary administration that then seemed inevitable. But I am certain that he believed what he was saying at the time, and attribute this to  my knowledge of this guy over many years, his ardent patriotism, his whole-hearted commitment to the Democrats and Hillary, and the sense that he was relaying to us what was a settled intention within circles of the Hillary regime even more Inner-Party than he was. He was talking as if communicating a Party Line.

So back to today. Fred Reed’s piece “A Budget without Russians” provides the essential illumination.

 

“Methinks the insane hysteria over Russia needs to stop. It probably will not. For reasons of domestic and imperial politics the American public is again being manipulated into a war frenzy by Washington and New York. It is stupid, without justification, and dangerous.

The silliness over Russia is, obviously, part of the Establishment’s drive to get rid of Trump. Yes, the man is erratic, contradictory, shoots before he aims, backs off much of what he has promised, and may be unqualified as President–but that is not why Washington and New York want to get rid of him. It is about money and power, as is everything in the United States. Wall Street, the Pentagon, the Neocons, and the Empire run America. Trump has threatened their rice bowls.”

To summarize:

  1. There is an Establishment drive to get rid of Trump
  2. because he threatens an outburst of peace.

Reed continues:

What sense does this make–apart from money and power? Russia is an economically challenged nation of 145 million, less than half of Europe’s population and much less than half of America’s. Its economy is a small fraction of the combined economies of Europe and America. It is not on a war footing. It is not moving forces into position for an invasion. It is not mobilizing. To satellite photography, to NSA these things would be as obvious as leprosy on a prom queen. The Establishment would be screaming to high heaven if there were the slightest trace of preparation for war. The whole business is manufactured.

Indeed.

I have carefully gone over the Osnos, Remnick, Yaffa article on Trump, Putin and the supposed hacking of the democratic party’s email servers. Their conclusion:

 

No reasonable analyst believes that Russia’s active measures in the United States and Europe have been the dominant force behind the ascent of Trump and nationalist politicians in Europe. Resentment of the effects of globalization and deindustrialization are far more important factors. But many Western Europeans do fear that the West and its postwar alliances and institutions are endangered, and that Trump, who has expressed doubts about NATO and showed allegiance to Brexit and similar anti-European movements, cannot be counted on.

This is the conclusion of fact drawn by the authors, but you would be hard pressed to find it among all the heavy breathing and hand waving reported in the New Yorker article.

In short, the establishment believe that Trump is not politically reliable, and that, like Putin, he may be his own man, and for this reason they are setting out to destroy him, in the same way that Nixon was destroyed. I smell a judicial-political-media coup.

I keep wondering when some embattled US President will stage a coup and have a few hundred establishmentarians killed, just to get the attention of the rest of the Establishment that traitors never prosper. They play rough in the United States.

 

End days at the EPA, but no end to human folly

 

 

One of the great things about a change in power, for better or worse, is that what was impossible yesterday becomes today’s fait accompli. So it is with no small pleasure that I read that Trump is cutting $2 billion out of the US federal Environmental Protection Agency, specifically targeting global warming programs, and laying off 20% of the staff through layoffs, retirements and attrition.

Once the regulatory agency is no longer directing billions into proving man-caused global warming, then something like real scientific debate can resume.

The other day I read an article by Adam Pigott over at Milton Conservative. He was threatening to remind climate catastrophists of their pride, folly, intolerance, lunacy, rudeness, persecutions, mania, and stupidity for ever and ever. He writes:

Because the climate scam was too big. You pushed all of your chips into the centre of the table and said “all in” with a smug stare at us sitting on the other side of the felt. And you busted out. Not only have you busted out, but you don’t have any more chips to play. We’re not going to let you have any. From now on, every time you come up with some pathetic attempt to control populations through a fear-based con we will remind everyone of climate change. Every time governments attempt to hijack science to support a political agenda, we will bring up that old climate change bugbear. You are going to be shoved into the corner as the crazy bearded freak standing on the side of the road with his sign proclaiming the end of the world is nigh. We aren’t going to listen to you any more. You have proven yourselves too stupid or untrustworthy to participate in public discourse.

I would like to believe that the climate catastrophists will admit error and be humble. Only the most honest of them will do anything remotely like this, and they are few.  The whole edifice was constructed of lies, virtue signalling, herd-like orthodoxy, and smugness, and fed by moral self righteousness. Yet it seems to me that every sort of smelly little orthodoxy is composed of the same elements. Only the orthodoxies change, but not the fact that humans are are inclined to participate in them. I too, would like to fish-slap a few high-minded catastrophists, but I am not going to get the chance. Why? Because we meet only at funerals, or at church, or otherwise pleasant social occasions. Because they have moved on to the Trumpocalypse. Because the folly of the day has moved on. Because by being rude to people you persuade them only  that you are rude, not that you are right.

Moral outrage – for  which global warming catastrophism provides an enormous ongoing set of occasions – is explored in a recent study by Rothschild and Keefer. 

The results are not flattering to the perpetually outraged. A Reason magazine article summarizes its findings.

“Yet this conventional construction—moral outrage as the purview of the especially righteous—is “called into question” by research on guilt, they say.

Feelings of guilt are a direct threat to one’s sense that they are a moral person and, accordingly, research on guilt finds that this emotion elicits strategies aimed at alleviating guilt that do not always involve undoing one’s actions. Furthermore, research shows that individuals respond to reminders of their group’s moral culpability with feelings of outrage at third-party harm-doing. These findings suggest that feelings of moral outrage, long thought to be grounded solely in concerns with maintaining justice, may sometimes reflect efforts to maintain a moral identity.”

and further:

“Ultimately, the results of Rothschild and Keefer’s five studies were “consistent with recent research showing that outgroup-directed moral outrage can be elicited in response to perceived threats to the ingroup’s moral status,” write the authors. The findings also suggest that “outrage driven by moral identity concerns serves to compensate for the threat of personal or collective immorality” and the cognitive dissonance that it might elicit, and expose a “link between guilt and self-serving expressions of outrage that reflect a kind of ‘moral hypocrisy,’ or at least a non-moral form of anger with a moral facade.””

Which, as every conservative knows, is simply that the Left is holier than thou. But the conservative differs from the Leftist not in that one is holier-than-thou and the other is not. Rather, the conservative is aware that he can be a damn fool, and tried to limit his folly, intemperance, and wrath as  a matter of manners and personal virtue. So far as I can tell, the Leftist confuses his wrath for his virtue, and thinks that, the angrier he is at some injustice, the more virtuous he is being. Which is what the study just demonstrated.

Bill Nye—the Pseudo-Science Guy

Tucker Carlson on Fox interviewed Bill Nye, the pseudo-science guy, recently, and absolutely skewered him. Nye tries the old “the science is settled” routine whereupon Carlson asks him how much global warming is due to humans, given that the climate has changed hugely for millions of years without human intervention.

Nye tries the appeal-to-authority argument and tries looking down his nose at Carlson. But Carlson will have none of it. Well, if the science is settled, then you must know what you’re talking about. But, obviously, Nye doesn’t.

To establish a hypothesis, or even give it some credibility, competing hypotheses must be ruled out. It’s no good claiming that the man-made global warming appears to be right (it doesn’t even do that), the others must be shown to be wrong.

Nye doesn’t understand the basics of the scientific approach because he is just a political robot. At the end, his mind just snaps and he starts rambling on about “political leaks etc.”

Scott Adams has analyzed this superbly and says that this is the best example of cognitive dissonance that he’s ever seen. Check them both out here.

Rebel Yell

Brilliant Advertising

Ambition—a brilliant ad from the European Space Agency—shows how to plant the seeds of wonder and excitement for new missions for interplanetary exploration. The mission here is the Rosetta spacecraft and the comet Gerasimov. Enjoy…

 

Rebel Yell

Shortest possible briefing on the effects of CO2 in the atmosphere

 

Read this; it is cribbed entirely from Defeat Climate Alarmism. The basic facts you need to know if you ever get into a semi-rational discussion with someone genuinely curious. Avoid fanatics, because they truly do not want to know.

Carbon dioxide (CO2) is a plant food.  The CO2 concentration in the atmosphere has been increasing for the last 150+ years thanks to human activity, due to extracting and consuming fossil fuels, as well as land use changes. The added CO2 has benefited and continues to benefit natural systems and agriculture.  Scientists estimate that 15% of the current agricultural production comes from elevated CO2.For most of Earth’s evolutionary history, the CO2 concentrations were much higher than they are today or that they can reach in the foreseeable future. For example, the CO2 concentration in the Jurassic period was 3-6 times higher than it is today.

The so-called “pre-industrial atmosphere” was anomalously impoverished in CO2. Our sun is the main source of energy on the Earth’s surface. Heat is removed from the Earth’s surface and lower atmosphere through multiple mechanisms, including convection and radiation.  Earth radiates in the infrared spectrum.  Gases with molecules having three or more atoms are infrared-active: their molecules can absorb and emit radiation in specific parts of the infrared spectrum.  The main infrared-active gas in the Earth atmosphere is water vapor.  CO2 plays a very minor role, except during ice ages.  Further, it has a very narrow absorption/emission spectrum, and it is almost saturated even at low CO2  The amount of infrared radiation, temporarily absorbed by CO2 molecules in the atmosphere, grows nearly logarithmically (i.e., very slowly) with increases in CO2 concentrations.

Thus, the anthropogenic increase in atmospheric CO2 concentration has an extremely small warming effect, which is negligible compared with natural temperature fluctuations in any region. Even larger mean warming would be beneficial for human societies and the biosphere, especially as a buffer against natural temperature drops.A greenhouse is a man-made construction, minimizing air convection that removes heat from the ground and thus increasing the inside air temperature. Most greenhouses are artificially enriched with CO2 to facilitate plants’ growth.  CO2 plays no role in heat retention in a greenhouse.

The sea level has been rising since the last glacial episode, which ended about 20,000 years ago. In the last few thousands of years, the sea level has been rising at the rate of 0.2-1.0 inch per decade, and no acceleration has been detected in the last several decades.  There are different opinions on whether discernible global warming would accelerate or decelerate sea level rises.

The oceans are alkaline, which is the opposite of acidic. The freshwater in most locations is slightly acidic.

Humans exhale CO2 with each breath.

Attributing hurricanes, droughts, and extreme weather events to anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions, or to any known global anthropogenic activity, has no scientific basis. It has antecedents in the medieval witch hunts that included accusations of “weather cooking.”

Thanks to Prof. Fred Singer, Prof. Will Happer, and Prof. Richard Lindzen for reading and improving this summary.