June 21, 2016

The Deterioration of Discourse

After a long day of work and school I dealt with an epic traffic jam by ducking into a pleasant Ramen shop in Norfolk. 

The waitress, knows I'm a rightie and felt quite chuffed at the opportunity to needle me on the current Republican nominee, who, to avoid triggering any of our readers we will refer to as Whale Vomit for the remainder of this post. 

Anyway, she was quite happy that his campaign seemed to be imploding and noted that since Whale Vomit was the Republican nominee, we on the right had no moral authority whatsoever. 

Now...it had been a VERY long day, and I was really not in the mood to be thinking about Whale Vomit while attempting to appreciate my Miso Ramen, so I asked her what she thought of her party's nominee (who, in the interest of decency, we'll refer to as the She-Goat of The Forrest With A Thousand Foetid Young). The waitress got annoyed that I would even bring that up. Since nobody in the Democratic party actually likes that individual. 

I'll leave the obvious inconsistency to the reader.

The conversation turned to the violence at the Whale Vomit events and the fellow who had tried to shoot the republican nominee...After looking that news tidbit up the waitress was overcome with the blue county giggles and finally broke into laughter, suggesting that the would-be assassin ought to get a medal, or should have done better and if he'd died doing that he'd be a martyr. She also said that any violence at the Republican campaign events was entirely the fault of those rotten enough to show up to support the nominee. 

Absolutely no indication was given that she thought this was in any way unreasonable sentiment despite this being a representative republic as opposed to a recital of the Lord of the Flies.

My dismay at the results of the Republican primaries is Brobdingnagian, but I can say with considerable certainty that I hold anyone who is supportive of these thugs and would be assassins in even less esteem than I have for Whale Vomit.

This wasn't the faculty lounge or a meeting of the Weathermen, this was a Ramen shop and there was no hint of awareness that any line had been crossed.

Our civics has end stage cancer. 

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May 28, 2016

This, Gentle Readers....

...is why I say "no" to Vox Day.

I keep telling people this and keep getting blown off because "Vox is smart and hates the right people" or somesuch.

...and while this post languished in "draft" part two dropped

I urge you to read both in full.

Then tell me, is this what you want conservatism to become?

This is actually one of the most pernicious and vile problems with political correctness. When you define racism down, when you declare vast swaths of discourse off limits and smear everyone who expresses a political disagreement with the label of bigot, then you normalize people like this guy, and give them a way to ooze into our national discourse.

It doesn't help when some of his critics are SO vile that he can look good by comparison to them. It used to be that if someone was accused of being a racist and their retort was "Well, I'm against child rape! SO THERE!" that the public could point out that such a defense is not only a non-sequiter, but a straw man as pretty much everyone was in agreement that having sex with children is wrong. Alas now we have his vocal critics amongst the current Sci-Fi luminaries,  who can't quite denounce a NAMBLA advocate on one side and a whole bunch of people who have been victimized over the years for whom Vox Day (whose real name is Theodore Beale)  is a savior who is not only affirming the fact that they have been hurt, but is hated by, and reciprocates the animosity of those who caused them so much suffering. 

So yes. Some of the people that dislike us, and that Vox Day also dislikes are truly vile pieces of work. I would go so far as to call them monsters.That doesn't mean he should be allowed to define who we are or not be called out by us for espousing views unrelated to child abuse that we not only find abhorrent, but that the left has been slanderously ascribing to us for decades. 

Just as many on the left have missed the point that 1984 is a cautionary tale and not a how to manual, so do many of Vox Day's apologists not quite grok the lessons of Faust (or Elric for that matter). The alt-right (which is actually old school, Wilsonian progressivism) currently has an undeniable energy and is riding the backlash against political correctness quite skillfully. However, allying with them comes at too high a price, for these toxic remoras will either drown us by their weight of their odious views, or in the worst case, use us as a platform to spread and legitimize those beliefs. The results of that are not likely to be good, either politically, or morally. I for one won't have it on my conscience. 

When fighting monsters it is important to not become one yourself, for that rather defeats the purpose of the exercise. 

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May 04, 2016

Ruminations Upon The Kobayashi Maru and Such

While there is a considerable amount of elation in certain quarters today....

....rest assured that the inevitable disappointment of these bird brains is unlikely to provide sufficient schadenfreude to compensate for the woe their efforts will bring upon us all. 


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May 03, 2016

The Dog returns to his Vomit and the Sow returns to her Mire

And one of those will be our leader

For the state of our civics is dire.

"[expletives deleted]"

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April 02, 2016

This is Not a Change in Format

...nor a trend. 

However, this discussion by Milo Yiannopoulos and some less exuberantly gay fellow about current political trends and especially political correctness is well worth an hour and a half of your time. 

I obviously don't agree with Milo's sanguine take on Trump, particularly regarding his proposals about libel law, but this is a very good, thoughtful, and topical discussion. 


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March 28, 2016

So Very True...

(Some of her typings not subject to the 'Trust and Safety Council are here)

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February 16, 2016

Is a Red Guard in a Grey Suit of No Concern?

One troubling kerfuffle that is getting short shrift outside of right leaning blogs. involves a small time author who got cut by his publisher because his villains motivations were impolitic. This says more about the publisher than anything else, and it would be a non story, if not for the reports of the very pervasive nature of a monoculture in a lot of the publishing industry. 

One argument that I hear regarding stories like this is that it is not news and there is nothing wrong with it because the 'policing' is being done by a corporation and it's not a government doing the censoring, so it's not actually censorship.   

By that logic, the Hayes Code and the Comics Code Authority which were instituted not by the government, but by trade associations and agreements between corporations were just peachy keen. Even the Hollywood Blacklist, though initially a reaction to contempt of congress citations, was not a government pogrom but was initiated voluntarily by the studios. If that sort of thing appeals to you then fine, enjoy your homeowners association and live happily in your chosen dystopia. However, for the rest of us, when virtual monopoly that controls a good chunk of public discourse silences viewpoints the effect can be the same in many ways as a government doing it. The differences can be reduced further when these entities quietly collude with the government in suppressing viewpoints.  Of course, having the government barge in and force these entities to allow the speech they are banning would unambiguously be a 1st amendment violation. However, the situation as it is developing is deeply troubling. Thus it is wise to ensure that people are aware of these things and encourage alternate venues for online socialization and different outlets for publication. 

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December 31, 2015

Even Those On The Side Of The Angels

who take too many shortcuts in pursuit of their goals often end up in a different place than they intended serving different ends than they hoped and may find that they have merely replaced the monsters they sought to vanquish.

Fallen Angel by Saburo

Yeah...it's political, so below the fold it goes...

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February 14, 2015

If the FEC makes rules that limit my First Amendment right to express my opinion on core political issues, I will not obey those rules.

After many moves, I reside now in the town of my birth. 

And yet...

Today I find myself taking the pledge above; a pledge that in the country of my birth would have been unimaginable due to its redundancy.

"Fundamental transformation" indeed.

The United States of America is one of a few nations that is not defined by an ethnicity. In fact it is not even defined by geography. The U.S.A. is an experiment in facilitating a set of ideals. Take those away and the nation is no more, no matter what the map, or the U.S. code may say. 

Which brings us to this...

In October, then FEC Vice Chairwoman Ann M. Ravel promised that she would renew a push to regulate online political speech following a deadlocked commission vote that would have subjected political videos and blog posts to the reporting and disclosure requirements placed on political advertisers who broadcast on television. On Wednesday, she will begin to make good on that promise.

There are thoughts on this by other far more eloquent and prolific than I here, here, and here,  

No apologies for this being above the fold. 

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February 01, 2015

Just the Darndest Thing...

A cynical person, vaguely aware of the Sheldon Silver scandals that are rocking New York politics right now, might conclude that the spontaneous combustion of a certain warehouse (containing government records) which was so pyrotechnically impressive that it required a 7 alarm response, has caused the evacuation of the surrounding neighborhoods and may burn for days, would be indicative of some truly incendiary information having been in the warehouse, instead of the whole thing being nothing more than a particularly egregious run on sentence and a bad pun.  


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January 24, 2015

The Buried Lede

...in the State of the Union Speech is actually kind of disturbing...

"CRAP!...this sounds like it's gonna involve discussing Politics and I don't wanna get struggled against this early in the semester!"

Don't worry. We put these things below the fold...

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January 15, 2015

Cautionary Tale or 'How To' Manual?

I guess it depends on who reads these things.
Pixy has thoughts on one of the less appealing responses to the recent massacre in Paris.

I urge you to read the whole thing.


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December 25, 2014

Look Who's Back in the News

Well, it seems that a procedural discrepancy has resulted between one (Washington Post Article) and twelve (Drudge headline) lab techs being exposed to Ebola. 

This difference in numbers is not just due to link-baitery on the part of Drudge, it appears that up to a dozen people were in close proximity to an Ebola sample with at least one being closely monitored for the next 21 days. 

But wait there's more 

The mistake comes after a series of incidents this summer involving the mishandling of dangerous pathogens at the nation’s labs. An incident at a CDC lab in June potentially exposed dozens of employees to live anthrax because employees failed to properly inactivate the anthrax when transferring samples.

Ebola Tan sez: "You know what? I'm really starting to like those CDC guys!"

In other Ebola news: 

The Ebola Czar decided to leave his post early next year. As Professor Reynolds says "It's almost as if he was brought in as a distraction. "

Also: Sierra Leone has canceled Christmas because of the outbreak. 

Despite recent improvements in treatment, the current death toll is over 7,500, out of just under 20,000 cases
This grim number provides a useful means to test predictions against results...
A couple of months ago, there were predictions of 1.4 million infected by the end of next month. Of course there are still 36 days to catch up, but that grim forecast is unlikely to be borne out. Thus, one can take comfort from the fact that the doomsayers were sufficiently wrong as to be off by a bit under two orders of magnitude.
On the other hand, as the linked article notes, the doomsayers in question were the CDC. 

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December 17, 2014

Being a Terrorist Sure Does Get Results

North Korea and/or affiliated individuals have gotten a film's release cancelled  by making terroristic threats. Sony knuckled under and pulled The Interview after a computer hack which revealed that Sony employs a bunch of jerks was complimented with a threat to do...something September eleventhy if the company released said film as scheduled.


Cuba meanwhile, took an American hostage and got the embargo lifted as a condition of his release. 

Neo has thoughts on this development including why the super secret nature of the Cuba capitulation should be extremely worrying with regard to the ongoing negotiations with Iran. 

However, in the larger sense, the implication that terrorism now works quite efficiently in achieving one's strategic (and artistic) goals is likely to be a much bigger issue. While there was concern about such precedents  in the wake of the Bergdhal and Innocence of Muslims controversies, these two events are rather unambiguous in the total overwhelming victory achieved by the perpetrators of violence. Sony is not a government, but its actions send a message about the stomach society has for standing up for free speech. This message is unlikely to be lost upon those that would do us harm.

Of course the fruits one gets from resorting to violence needs to be assessed in comparison with how one is treated by peacefully using the political process to support one's beliefs or policy goals.

Only then is a full assessment of the messages being sent by the powers that be be able to be fully appreciated.

I fear today's double dose of Quislingisms will come back to haunt us for years to come. 

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Of Course...

....sacred honor requires that Brickmuppet Blog host this trailer.

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November 23, 2014

I Have a Question


"Please! No! I just wanted to take the day off and not worry about anything other than bidding on a Cool Science Shirt!"

Fear not. 
My question is below the fold...

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November 04, 2014

Election Day

The radio this morning had caller after caller going on about the issues in Virginia Beach, where the touch screen machines have apparently become self aware...and decided that they are Democrats.  

Fortunately, here in Portsmouth, we use paper ballots and thus do our bit to keep Skynet at bay. 

However, this morning at my polling place there were only three other voters present and I spent less time ther than I would have if I'd stopped for gas. 

Elections are decided by those who bother to vote. 

If I can't persuade you of the importance of doing your civic duty, perhaps this young lady can. 

Gai Rei Zero's Isayama Yomi was rendered sans text by Zhen Lin 

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September 14, 2014

Understanding Modern Vocabulary

As the English language leans forward into a brave new world of byzantine nomenclature, some individuals who have not been brought up to speed on the changes in terminology might come to the conclusion that certain recent statements are actually feckless dissembling rather than enlightened and inoffensive specificity. 

To address the allegations, we've tracked down one of The Brickmuppet's Crack Team of Train hopping Linguists to parse the recent statements by the State Department on current events. So, from somewhere along the Masassas Line, here is our expert on exposition.

Dude..This is a [expletive deleted] of [expletive deleted]  pollyanish [expletive deleted] newspeak. You interrupted my [expletive deleted] vacation to [expletive deleted] show me the English language being [expletive deleted] up the [expletive deleted] by a bunch of [expletives deleted] incompetents using Orwellian [expletive deleted] to distract from their [expletives deleted]. This [expletive deleted] is why I TOOK the vacation in the first place. I'm gonna [ remainder of correspondence deleted after consultation with standards and practices] 


I guess the rest of the post needs to go below the fold...

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August 14, 2014

Poetry Corner

  This evening, my friend BOB! and I were discussing...current events ...when suddenly he broke into verse (as he is occasionally wont to do). He thus summed up the situation perfectly.

"Please don't let this be about politics...or Kipling." 

Fear not gentle readers....We'll put it below the fold. 

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August 07, 2014

I Find to my Astonishment That I Do Not Immediately Despise This Plan

The President just gave a speech.

It was rather more direct than usual. 

First some background. 

ISIS (or ISIL) has been slaughtering, crucifying and otherwise creatively exterminating Christians for some time now. However, they have taken as their latest project the complete extermination of the Yazidi, an ancient community in Ninevah whose faith is an offshoot of Zoroastrianism,. The Yadzidi survivors have fled  in an attempt to make for Baghdad but are now besieged and surrounded on a mountain in the desert where starvation and thirst are beginning to take their toll. Thus we are on the verge of a near total genocide. 

ISIL has also taken the dam overlooking Baghdad which means they control vast amounts of electrical power a good percentage of the capitals water and can, should they blow the dam, drown thousands of civilians.

Elsewhere, the Kurds are on the ropes and the whole region is becoming an abattoir. Finally, ISIL, has put their territorial gains and the months they have been largely unmolested to good use, having grown from around 10,000 troops to well over 50,000. 

The President is in a difficult position and none of the options before him are desirable. This evening he announced that US forces have begin air dropping aid  to the Yadzidi and he has authorized what he describes as "targeted strikes" to defend them and a US consulate being menaced by ISIL troops. 

As many of you know, I am not in agreement with our President on most maters, but tonight he is faced with a selection of wretched options and he chose what he believes is the least dreadful amongst them.  There will be a lot of second guessing on this and in the weeks and months to come erudite and voluminous critiques of the minutia of his decision will be made and judgements will be passed with the profound wisdom and knowledge that comes from hindsight. 

But for right now, Barak Obama, our president, has decided to attempt to stop a genocide.  There is much to warrant concern, but I for one do not immediately despise this plan. 

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