May 13, 2021

Oh. Dear.

I have a degree in History. It's not worth a lot and its acquisition realistically passes no cost-benefit-analysis. However, that useless degree does foment a bit of dread in me when I read this


Affirmation is not always a cause for unbridled joy.

Now for some music...

Posted by: The Brickmuppet at 02:20 PM | Comments (9) | Add Comment
Post contains 49 words, total size 1 kb.

1 Speaking of disturbing...There is something not quite right looking at a 'realistic' Saber.

Posted by: cxt217 at Thu May 13 22:09:40 2021 (4i7w0)

2 Akshully, in a way this is a little bit reassuring. 

You may recall that in 2012 something like 400 or 500 retired flag officers ran a advertisement in a paper endorsing Romney the day before the election. 

So, there are three slightly reassuring aspects.  a) lower number of signatories, as expected of a more fraught positions  b)  Collaborationist GOP aligned officials admitting that something was wrong, after all.  c)  Public statement means that these people aren't planning direct action.   Yeah, the naivety to think their speech will fix it may be wrong, but checking off the ticky box by trying is not wrong. 

But, it may be better to have the military sit out of things entirely.  Any retired military personal involved means that martial law tribunals have to be run under the UCMJ.  As opposed to pre-DoD standards of military law.  And pre-DoD standards of military law is the only obvious formal method of resolving disputes that hasn't been contaminated by a possible conspiracy of lawyers and judges.  If a conspiracy of lawyers and judges exists, addressing it in the current formal legal system legal system could be indefinitely subverted.

This seems theoretically intractable, so it is good that physics does not force us to solve the problem in a way tractable with theory.  Americans have solved problems before without theory, and come up with theory later. 

Posted by: PatBuckman at Fri May 14 08:34:46 2021 (6y7dz)

3 It's just a weak-sauce imitation of the recent French letters.

Posted by: Pete Zaitcev at Fri May 14 18:48:44 2021 (LZ7Bg)

4 @Pete That is true to an extent, given that the French letter was signed by active military members. However, an active duty member of the U.S. military is forbidden from having a political opinion in their capacity as a service member. (Out of uniform and if they are not broadcasting their status as a S.M. it's fine). Letters such as this might ruin an enlisted's career and could get an officer sacked or sent to Leavenworth, regardless of the party in power. 

This is, in the U.S. experience, fairly unprecedented given the scope and topics tit covers. 

Posted by: The Brickmuppet at Sat May 15 11:30:28 2021 (5iiQK)

5 Broader situation is not one with good precedents. JFK cheated, but there were reasons to trust he wouldn't murder us for world communism. Democrats this cycle were carrying out murder and arson before taking power. And there is reason to think that the universities are sending students back out for more of the same this summer. It is actually reassuring knowing that there are retired flag officers who don't have their head in the sand, but this letter and these officers are pointless here. Might do some good if things were going to play out slowly, but regime leadership is too crazy and desperate for that.

Posted by: PatBuckman at Sun May 16 11:04:54 2021 (6y7dz)

6 I think a person can draw parallels to the run-up to the Spanish Civil War, if for no other reason then the population now has a critical mass of people -  on both sides - who are open to hitting the Big Red Button.

Posted by: cxt217 at Sun May 16 22:24:08 2021 (4i7w0)

7 cxt217 wins the historical awareness award for this thread. 
http://brickmuppet.mee.nu/images/guernica_all.jpg
May the Guenicas be where you aren't.

Posted by: The Brickmuppet at Mon May 17 07:03:09 2021 (5iiQK)

8 The pertinent question for the ever-more-likely armed internal national disagreement is....Will it be an armed argument regarding separation (A la Yugoslavia.) and acceptance, or will it be an armed argument for all the marbles (A la Spain.)?

Posted by: cxt217 at Mon May 17 22:20:32 2021 (4i7w0)

9 Separation is not a practical model.

Game out the first ACW going the other way militarily.

Forcing recognition of a separate CSA would not have ensured peace between the USA and CSA, nor would it have prevented further separatist movements.  In particular, the Union would not have been in a position to constrain abolitionists salty about the civil war. 

Sherman was right that he was waging war to prevent the USA from becoming Mexico, and experiencing Mexico's issues with endemic Civil War.  Robert Lee deserves a lot of credit and respect for mostly delivering the Confederate side of the peace after the war.  (That I say being informed about the Confederate die hards robbing banks, etc. gathering funds in preparation for the next attempt at civil war.)

If you split a nation to resolve a civil war, you only get peace when both factions have the internal power to prevent groups from trying to profit from banditry or further civil war. 

Yugoslavia was a composite of several different ethnic nations.  The separate nations could form political factions in a position to deliver on a negotiated peace. 

US does not appear to have established separate identities strong enough and necessarily positioned to assemble political factions so capable.  (The line between small r republican and small d democrat runs right through the middle of the American heart.)

Anyway, the potential for a civil war has long been a little apparent.  Very early on, some years ago, studying the issue, it became clear that one of the key issues is assembling not only a coalition that can win, but one that can deliver peace after the fighting.  This is difficult, and constrains options. 

One of the actual positives in current circumstances is that Trumpism could possibly be a core for such a coalition. 

Anyway, to skip going too deeply into the weeds, there's a heterodox model of American history and Americans that suggests we may figure out something that works out somehow. 

Posted by: PatBuckman at Wed May 19 10:48:13 2021 (6y7dz)

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