Thursday, March 31, 2016

- Cultural Humilty Training

The flower of American intellectualism at Stanford University is demanding "Cultural Humility Training", for all staff, as well as insisting that the next President of the University be selected from the vanishingly small minority of candidates who, while they may be suffering from serious mental illness, at least meet the Social Justice Warriors view of appropriate identity politics. To them, excellence must take a back seat to social justice.

One should remember that the Social Justice movement is built upon ideas of intersectional feminism, which has permeated every corner of the American University system. This is the premise that white heterosexual men are responsible for all the problems of everyone, everywhere, and all the 'oppression' needs to be taken as whole.

If the trend continues, cultural humility training is coming soon to a public school near you. Given the maturity of their ideas, probably a grammar school.

As a white man, I will submit to cultural humility training only if someone can demonstrate to me that women, minorities, and transsexuals have created a separate culture as prosperous, productive, and free as the one that white men have created.

In the meantime, since no such culture (or universe) exists, I invite them all to suck my white privilege.

- The Perfect Trump Replacement

I’ve got it. The person who, if drafted at the Republican convention, can illicit the support of all the potential candidates and their supporters. He’s not running, but in many ways he’s the perfect potential candidate.

Trump supporters want an outsider. A non-politician. They want someone they recognize, who is fully prepared to tweak the noses of the social justice warriors without flinching or retreating behind useless apologies. The #nevertrump movement wants someone with established conservative credentials, who isn’t a recent convert, and understands how government actually works.

If the party puts up a Mitt Romney or Paul Ryan, Trump people will stay home and Hillary runs the table on election day. If Trump is able to negotiate the delegates he needs without actually winning, a substantial portion of the Republican base will stay home, and Hillary wins again. But I know who can be drafted by the party faithful. A man who will clearly garner all the Trump supporters, and still motivate the traditional base to rally to the cause. He may be personally flawed, but he’s been vetted by decades of mainstream media hatred and has maintained his conservative principles.

When we finally get to Cleveland, we need to draft… Rush Limbaugh.

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

- Lauren Southern Supports Hillary

There are some great anti-feminists coming out of Canada of all places. I guess they're a little further over the waterfall than we are, and the tide is beginning to turn up there.

- Mike Ramirez: National Treasure Part:232,546,343,921

- Hillary Clinton's Eternal Appeal

Though I don’t personally subscribe to PUA culture, there is much that can be learned about women from the way these immature and disgruntled young men react to them. That’s what PUA culture is – a reaction. Its men accepting the inevitability of what Feminism has done to the Female mindset, and turning on its side to try to make the things that Feminism ignores about women into advantages for men. What comes of that isn't exactly an attitude that will lead to a more productive society, but I admire their ingenuity and tenacity. The thing is though, since I’m old enough to know that most women aren’t worth the trouble in the first place, I tend to be a bit pickier when choosing my female companions. I can get away with that. And for me, exceptionally good looks is only a starting point.

None the less, what these guys say about women matches my personal experience. So unless someone shows me a better model for predicting female behavior, I’m going to go with the lessons I learned from reading the PUA talk in the Manosphere.

One of the things that they talk about all the time is affectionately called “the rationalization Hamster”. This is the tendency of women to delude themselves into believe whatever they want to about reality, based exclusively on how they feel about it. Imagine a Hamster on a wheel in the woman’s brain, running frantically and getting nowhere. From urbandictionary.com:

The rationalization hamster is a legendary creature dwelling deep in the minds of the self-delusional, and is particularly common among young liberal women. From birth, the rationalization hamster enters a symbiotic relation with its host, whereby whenever the host feels a craving to do something completely insane and malicious that will have horrible consequences for everyone in the long run, the rationalization hamster will jump on its wheel and run really, really fast, getting the magical hamster wheel to spin out a long sheet of paper full of neat rationalizations for the ultimately devastating action.

I could think of nothing else when I read this piece from Slate this morning about why Hillary Clinton is unlikeable. From the Author:

The concept of trust has taken on gendered import in the current presidential campaign. Pegging Clinton as an inauthentic, conniving phony with little concrete evidence to support that characterization is, essentially, calling her an impostor. In a Guardian editorial on Monday, former New York Times executive editor Jill Abramson pointed out that Clinton has the best truth-telling record of any candidate in the race, yet even 40 percent of Democrats think she can’t be trusted.

The piece is filled from stem to stern with nonsense, as most Feminist writing is. (I laughed out loud at the part about how women are taught to ‘think things through’ instead of simply being no good at risk management decision because they are so naturally terrified of risk.) Remember, the idea of women being responsible for the consequences of their own actions is anathema to Feminism. According to Feminist ideology they possess no personal agency and are nothing but object to be acted upon by men and male crafted society. They are helpless victims, incapable of standing up to the all-powerful patriarchy and suffer from constant ‘oppression’. But first and foremost, the reality of women, especially Feminist women, is defined exclusively by how they feel about themselves.

Me, I’m a bit of an instigator. And I find that particularly entertaining when I know that the person I’m speaking to is deeply delusional, so there is a good chance I'll damage their fragile self image in the process. So I’ve taken the occasional pot shot at Feminists in the comments sections of liberal media websites. I’ve said a lot of things designed to challenge Feminists, and they always make them furiously angry. But one thing I said once clearly stands out in my memory because of the amazingly hyperbolic reaction it got.

Feminists always over-react, it’s part of being a Feminist. That’s why they made up things like micro-aggression, the imaginary ‘pay gap’, and the insidious ‘rape culture’ nonsense in order to preserve their status as victims when no evidence of victimization can be found. But the thing I said that got the strongest reaction of Feminists had nothing to do with that. All I said was something that all men see as a given, but apparently women find utterly horrible. Here is my direct quote that brought down the wrath of the feminist Valkyries :

“If you feminists really wanted to be treated the same as men, then you need to realize something that men have always known… no one cares how you feel, they only care what you do.”

There was a little more too it, but that was at the core of my point. The rage and fury this innocuous comment got was astounding. It was as if I had successfully convinced them that their entire existence was useless. I validated all their anger at the heartlessness of men, and invalidated all their self obsessed emotion based arguments, all in a single statement. It was a fun day. And it points to an important change in what Feminism has become.

The Feminist movement is in the end, all about elevating the importance of feelings, specifically, feelings that the woman has about herself, and her overall appeal to men. Feminists don’t like to admit that they want to be appealing to men. And as a result, most women who do, have abandoned the Feminist label for that very reason. That’s left only the absolute dreck of the dating world camped out in the gender studies programs of America. There is nothing left but the losers in the genetic mating lottery. There was a joke about it once: "Did you ever notice that the women who are in favor of abortion are women you wouldn't want to F*** in the first place?" That's more true now than ever.

Third wave Feminism has degraded into a movement for deeply unattractive people (men and women both) who see it as a path to overturn as much of society as they have to in order to overcome their unappealing physical appearance in the great dating game. That’s why self-delusion plays such a big part of their psychology. Because in society as it is, their appeal is minimal and they know it. And it's easier for them to delude themselves in defense of their ego, than it would be to strive for a real improvement in who they are. So instead, they strive to reorder society top to bottom, until the new order becomes a game where they would get to win. One glance at Feminist champion Andrea Dworkin, reveals the truth of this claim.

What all this has to do with Hillary is this: Hillary is an aging Feminist who spent her life lying to herself and others about her accomplishments and abilities. But Hillary isn’t going to be judged by how she feels herself, but about how we feel about her. Inside Feminism's insular and circular worldview, this is called the oppression of the patriarchy. But outside Feminism, this is called 'real world assessment'.

She’s seen as dishonest because as a matter of objectively defined fact, she is. She seems shrewish and harpy like because her contempt for the ‘little people’ comes through. She can’t turn her feelings off enough to hide it. And her lack of public charm, though not really a quality I filter for in Presidential candidates, is a product of her view of herself, and her narcissistic female need to constantly elevate herself compared to others. We’ve all seen it.

I’ve seen women be successful in business – exactly two of them – both at the top of their games. And the thing they had in common (and with all men as well) was the ability to separate what they were seeing and doing, from how they felt about it. Hillary can’t do that, so she can’t be successful. Instead, she’ll let her rationalization hamster drive her every action, and every decision. She’ll fail because she’s delusional about herself, and then she’ll rationalize all the consequences away as not being her fault.

Americans can see that. And that’s the real reason we don’t trust most leadership from women, or any from Hillary. In truth, it’s because their endlessly narcissistic self involvement makes them worse leaders than men.

Monday, March 28, 2016

- A NJ Law I support

I know it's hard to believe, but after 2 years back in NYC dealing with phone zombies, I strongly support this legislation and hope NY will do likewise:

A proposed “distracted walking” bill in New Jersey would ban pedestrians from walking and texting simultaneously, with the possibility of a $50 fine or even a short jail sentence

These phone zombies are the most annoying thing ever. Otherwise normal people turned into mindless drones who stagger into countless people while staring down at their phones. I've had circumstances where 5 separate people stagger straight into me in the very short block between 41st and 42nd on Lexington avenue.

I also think the penalty for driving 55 or less in the leftmost lane of a multi-lane highway should be death by public execution (maybe flaying alive Game of Thrones style). So I may be somewhat off of the generally accepted standard here.

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Anarcho-tyranny coming to a polling station near you?

A post over at VDARE.com makes a point at the potential for violence this election.  I think the writer definitely has a point.  I will be looking at great interest to how the Left ramps up the intimidation should Trump win the nomination...


From VDARE:

I fear that the recent riot in Chicago that shut down Trump’s peaceful, lawful political rally is a dark portent of things to come.

I predict that this coming November, we will witness a mass crime wave of voter intimidation that the country has never before seen. Leftists, Muslims, Mexicans, and the other “bruised fruit of humanity” will use whatever Communist and Nazi tactics are necessary to keep whites (and perhaps even turncoat Democrats) away from the polls to ensure that Trump loses in November. Blocking roadways to the polls, laying caltrops on busy roads, destroying voting machines, turning away eligible voters on false pretenses, threats to bomb or attack polling places, destroying Trump signage, chasing out vote canvassers, and attacking voters will all be fair game. Anarcho-tyranny will spring into action, as voters that attempt to defend themselves against intimidation will themselves be arrested on other bogus charges. The arrests will be excused as necessary to “prevent further violence” or similar baloney.


The rest is here:

http://www.vdare.com/letters/an-engineer-predicts-massive-anti-white-voter-intimidation-in-november

Friday, March 25, 2016

- Why Trump Is Leading

We all continue to wonder what the appeal of Donald Trump actually is. Well I think it’s actually quite simple. But in order to understand it, you need to step out of your perspective just a bit, and look at things the way others might be looking at them.

Our culture has cancer - that much is clear. We’ve elevated victimology to high morality, and identity politics to a kind of religion. And it’s exposed an important symptom of our cultural disease.

I’m a middle aged white guy. I’m highly intelligent, educated, prosperous, and relatively well informed. I’m a C-level executive and have created jobs and provided countless opportunities for other to improve their lives. I’ve spent my whole life trying very hard to do the right thing, and have paid a price for it. Had I been just a bit more self-interested and political, I would be considerably wealthier than I am now. But that was never anywhere near as important to me as trying to do what I believed was right.

But according to our current political fashion, vigorously supported by both academia and those at the highest reaches of our government, I am a monster. My skin color makes me an exploiter, an oppressor, an evil racists, misogynist scumbag who must be brought to heel by the overpowering might of the government. “Fairness” is defined as punishing me and rewarding someone who is a woman, a minority, or both.

That makes me angry of course. It’s a hard thing to be accused of being a villain simply because of your skin color. But I have the consolation of my success to lean on, and the philosophical knowledge that reality cannot be ignored forever. I understand a great deal about how the world really works. So I sit in my Manhattan apartment in a fashionable neighborhood, with my beautiful girlfriend, eating some of the best food and drink available anywhere, and setting my anger aside. Living well is the best revenge, and though some people are doing better than I am, I’m still living pretty well. So it's enough for me to 'wait out' this nonsense.

But not everyone has that consolation, and they are still told that they are the villain in the story of America. There are many men out there who work hard, and don’t actually achieve much in the way of financial success. Maybe they aren’t as smart as I am, or they didn’t have the will to work as hard. Maybe they early mistakes in life and never got an education, or had some other bit of bad luck. One way or the other they make a fraction of what I do. And because that’s so, they lead a much more meager lifestyle. But since they are just as white, they are considered every bit as much of a villain as I am by the political left.

Those men have no reason to set aside their anger. They aren’t 1%’ers, by definition they are doing ‘about average’. And every single day they are told by the media, academia, and government that they have ‘privilege’ and must publicly denounce themselves and their lives like some kind of public communist show trial. When the worst of the left, the Feminists and the black lives matter crowd, go looking for monsters, they don’t restrict themselves to people who actually do better. “White Male Privilege” is applied equally to all white men.

Some white men aren’t going to take it anymore, so they’re voting for Donald Trump.

The left’s toxic worldview has become the worldview of mainstream America. And most of the people that are negatively affected by this don’t have pleasant cerebral lives filled with wealth and beauty. They are hard working, blue collar men who do difficult and sometimes dangerous jobs. And they’re sick of being called villains when they have nothing to show for it.

The Republican intelligencia can’t understand why these people are ‘fooled’ by Donald Trump. But I don’t believe they are. I think they are looking at a choice between Hillary who more or less admits she blames them for the misery of the world, and mainstream Republicans who say they don’t blame them but in the end won’t show the backbone necessary to stand up to the left’s steady rain of lies. They are choosing Trump because he’s the only choice that hasn’t already proven that it will fail.

And if it burns everything to the ground they’re OK with that. They don’t really have all that much to lose.

- There is an O in Incompetent

If ever there were evidence that Barak Obama was totally unqualified to be President, this is it:

President Obama has stoked controversy after he suggested to an audience of Argentinian youth that there was no great difference between communism and capitalism and that they should just “choose from what works”.
Obama responded to a question about nonprofit community organizations and the necessity of attracting funding from both the public and private sectors.
“So often in the past there has been a division between left and right, between capitalists and communists or socialists, and especially in the Americas, that’s been a big debate,” Obama said.
“Those are interesting intellectual arguments, but I think for your generation, you should be practical and just choose from what works. You don’t have to worry about whether it really fits into socialist theory or capitalist theory. You should just decide what works,” he added.
Obama went on to praise Cuba’s socialist system under dictator Raúl Castro, touting the country’s free access to basic education and health care, although he acknowledged that Havana itself “looks like it did in the 1950s” because the economy is “not working”.

Of course, there is the little matter of the shortages, the inefficiency, the lack of incentives, the tragedy of the commons, the truth of the broken window theory, the utter impossibility of central planning, and the inconvenience of the 100 Million dead bodies of innocent civilians that communism created. But at least the grave diggers were assured of work.

This is from Alex Jones, who is always entertaining, but not always focused on facts. But this is a slam dunk no brainer. But all I can think about is that I wonder how Barry would feel if he were on the receiving end of totalitarian regime instead of being the one calling the shots for it? As a former US President he'll never know. But when President Trump get's elected, a lot of other Americans may get to find out.

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

- Things We've Seem To Have Forgotten

The video below is the debate regarding equality from Milton Friedman's 'Free To Choose. In it, he and my hero Thomas Sowell pummel devoted socialist Frances Fox Piven and left leaning Economist Peter Jay. I like to re-watch these videos periodically whenever I begin to despair on America's ability to reason. If nothing else, it reminds me that it hasn't always been that way.

In this example from 1980, you can see the seeds of all the argument styles that leftists have come to rely on. It's all about changing the frame of the argument, avoiding discussion of actual facts, and finding a way to justify a 'moral' right to use the force of government to impose their view of the world on others, whether the others want them to or not.

Tragically, these days the Academic community has totally forgotten that clarity of thought and careful logic and reason are a means of obtaining 'the truth'. These days it's all about how people feel about things, and whether they 'feel' like things are fair, regardless of the methods used to obtain that fairness, or for that matter the 'fairness' actually achieved. These days that 'equality of results' straw man, isn't a straw man at all, but is the stated goal of much of academia. And they don't care who has to suffer to get there, so long as the bulk of the suffering is done by white men.

As always, I blame Milton Friedman for our current desperate situation. If only he hadn't gone and died, there might still be a persuasive voice in favor of personal liberty and the stunning results it can achieve in improving the lives of ordinary people.

- If Only We Could Be More Like Europe

For decades we've all heard from our liberal friends how we should be more like the worker's paradises of Europe. For instance Brussels:

Or Paris:

Or maybe more like Sweden:

Or maybe a smaller city like Cologne:

Maybe 60 minutes can tell it better. I'd try starting from around the 5:00 Minute mark:

Yes... what a paradise Europe's social democracies are. For my part it's tough to watch an entire civilization self destruct like this. If only there were some men left in Europe.

- A Difference Of Opinion

A few years ago (maybe a bit more) I told John Derbyshire over tea in his living room that I thought the Hedge fund business model was dead. John knows that I’ve been involved in the Hedge Fund world for over 2 decades as a key decision maker, and is familiar with the firms where I worked. So he took this assessment seriously. But that didn’t mean he bought into it whole hog.

John, you see, is capable of critical thinking. He has confidence in my expertise, but that’s not the same as ‘knowing’ what I know. I had good supporting arguments and that offered strong support for my view, but for a man like him who is interested in facts, it could hardly be the last word on an issue. And I didn’t expect it to be.

A few weeks later he asked a common acquaintance who also works in the Hedge Fund space what he thought of my take, and that guy said it sounded miles off the mark. (I know this because John later reported his view back to me.) That guy said that the firm he was working for was doing well and he himself was doing just as well, and that he saw no reason to believe in the model I described. That man was a mid-level analyst rather than a senior decision maker so he didn’t have the wide field of view that I did. But, the things he said were all true, and at least offered a reasonable counter point to my take on things.

This is what we who left American Universities prior to 1995 call, a difference of opinion. I mention a specific year, but I could be off a bit on that as well. But one thing I know for certain is that almost no one who graduates any American University this year, will be able to muster the kind of critical thinking required to support either view. Instead they will say something like “Hedge Funds are for rich guys, and rich guys are evil exploiters who don’t acknowledge their ‘privilege’, so it’s a good thing that the Hedge Fund world is dying… that must be the truth.”

If you haven’t guessed, that’s a direct quote from a newly graduated Millennial, and is a good example of what passes for ‘thinking’ these days. They are neither in the argument nor out. They have no meaningful contribution to make to the dialog. And they don’t understand that there is a question being addressed which they have neither correctly heard, nor understood. To them it’s all a moral judgment on the perceived purity of the actors, taken from the rigid perspective of feminist driven cultural Marxism.

After dealing with enough of these kids, I’m convinced that American conservatives must find a way to take back the American University system. It has always been that those who can’t, teach. But this has become completely ridiculous. Now those who can’t, can’t even seem to actually teach. Instead they take our huge investment in our youth, and teach them that thinking is the same as feeling, that feelings are as relevant to the truth as facts, and have now sent an entire ‘lost generation’ of kids out into the world without the mental discipline to even participate in the serious questions of the day. It’s not indoctrination anymore, it’s now full on breach of contract.

I’m not an education expert. But it’s clear to me that there is little but the worst kind of cherry picked advocacy research being done in the social sciences, and in gender and racial studies no thinking is being done at all. If the people we have entrusted to manage our higher education system can’t face the truth of things themselves, then we need to remove them and replace them with people who will. It’s not a question of the cost – it’s a question of the poor product delivered. When the car you buy won’t even start, it isn’t a question of the cost of the car. That is very much a fit analogy for the decline of American academia.

So what’s the truth of the question? You got me. But here’s some detail that might help you decide. I was a senior manager at a billion dollar Hedge Fund where I hired investment decision makers. My argument was based on my view that market behavior had changed and that individual’s no longer directed their own investments into individual stocks with the volume necessary to provide an “information advantage” to the more sophisticated hedge fund players.

Add to that the ‘single market participant’ model present with the Federal Reserve in the Bond market, and it was my belief that though the best hedge funds might continue to be profitable, it would be nearly impossible for them to continue to provide high enough returns to justify the 2 and 20 pricing model. The best might still make steady money, but would have to cut their fees, and with them their support staff and other costs – which means lower returns still. The worst hedge funds would simply go out of business or produce revenues so spotty and unreliable that they can no longer maintain their investment base. In the time since the Derb and I had the original conversation, this is exactly what seems to have happened in virtually every hedge fund sector. And having been a mid-level analyst myself once, I don’t think that’s a perspective that a most of them think about.

Still, I could be wrong, and reasonable minds (if you can find one like John did) could offer valid counter arguments. I’ve also been working on a Private Equity turnaround for a little over 2 years now and things may have changed in the Hedge fund world in the interim. It would surprise me, but it’s possible. But what obviously won’t happen is that there will be no sharp young thinker who will add anything to the discussion. They’ll all be working for ‘not for profits’ and doing victim advocacy, and protesting Trump rallies to lobby for socialism. (a position you can only argue in good faith by ignoring the vast majority of the full last century of history.) And they'll do these things because they aren’t capable of doing anything else. It’s not the social Justice Warriors who are the problem in Academia, they’re just a laughingstock. It’s the people they are running the institutions and setting the academic agenda who really have to go. the SJW's are just those people's witless victims. And our kids deserve much better than we are getting for them.

These poor kids cannot formulate a rational opinion on even the most minor topic, because no one taught them how. They are frozen in an emotional adolescence similar to the one embraced by the bulk of the professoriate. And they have been taught that to doubt them or even to seriously question their view is not the path to truth, but instead is an act of extreme heresy that will have dramatic negative consequences. I wouldn’t allow my daughter to engage in something like that for free, let alone pay 200K to have it done to her by an Ivy League university.

Something dramatic needs to be done about that or this empire will be ending a lot sooner than even the most cynical of us think.

Monday, March 21, 2016

- A Victim Mentality Disorder

Another somewhat dry but none the less brilliantly argued video from one of my newest heroes, Dr. Janice Viomengo:

It's sort of a shame that only women are allowed to say such obvious truths. But this is the nature of 21st century identity politics. Who you are matters far more to the far left than the 'content of your character".

With that said, Janice is a woman in the belly of the beast, who is doing the difficult work of tearing down the most obvious and destructive contradictions of Feminism with unrelenting logic and reason. I strongly urge you to watch all her videos. You won't regret it.

(Now if we could only find a back academic willing to do the same on race.)

- Stupid Is As Stupid Does

In light of HILN’s very thoughtful essay on why he (generally) believes Trump will be good enough, I have a few comments to add.

First of all, there is this, which I think speaks extremely well of Trump:

As the Trump campaign has accrued power, its treatment of the media has grown ever more worrisome. Reporters told me that Trump is incredibly attuned to his coverage in a way that other presidential candidates aren’t. The campaign will sometimes single out specific outlets for vindictive treatment. The Des Moines Register, the New York Times, BuzzFeed, and Univision were all denied access to Trump events in the wake of running negative coverage.

That’s a Slate piece where a reporter who is accustomed to media pampering and being allowed (and in some cases encouraged) to ask “Are you still beating your wife?” style questions to Republicans, is trying to find a way to get comfortable with a candidate who treats him the way he deserves - with contempt and disgust. That sort of open bias is considered DeRigeur for “journalists” when dealing with anyone to the political right of Elizabeth Warren. That Trump is having none of it is in my opinion a very good thing. If the rest of the Republicans behaved the same way, I’m convinced that Trump’s support would only be a fraction of what it is. There is at least as much hostility out there for 'the media' as there is for the 'Republican establishment'.

There isn’t any way for me to get to this politely so I’ll just come out and say it. I don’t share HILN’s confidence that Trump is a guy who can “get things done”. It’s one thing to refurbish a skating rink in the face of NYC bureaucracy and intransigent union laziness, and another to deal with the largest employer in the world that utterly controls 1/3 of the world’s largest economy. Especially one with the kind of ‘fantasyland’ view of balance sheets, spending, and debt that our government possesses. Whatever was wrong with the plan for Wollman rink, we know that virtually everything is wrong with how our government works. And unlike Wollman rink, that can't be fixed by throwing dollars at it.

On top of all that, the Federal government is riddled from top to bottom with people who are at least as detached from reality as the media is. Racial and gender ‘fairness’ regulation, corporatist lobbying infrastructure, and a religious devotion to top down micro management of every industry in the country are all 'the way things are' in Washington. When Trump goes looking for people who understand what's going on, his pool of ‘good people’ to draw from will be shallow, brackish, and involve some of the most incompetent people in America, who in the meantime view anything but institutionalized incompetence as being in violation of the accepted rules of 'fairness'.

The simple fact is, in dealing with the US Federal government, Trump will have only the same choices and resources that others would. He can dismantle it (in whole or part), he can add to it (in whole or part), or he can ignore it. In truth he’ll probably do all three with different portions of the behemoth, which is precisely what others would do. The question is which parts. And though I’m sure being able to get a coat of paint slapped onto a skating rink is harder than it looks, it’s really nothing compared to that. Especially when you have only a passing familiarity with how things were supposed to work in the first place.

I don’t think Trump understands what the government does, or why it thinks it’s doing it. I don’t think he possesses the analytical skill to determine which portions of the bureaucracy do the most harm, or exact the greatest economic cost for the meager benefit they may add. And I don’t believe that doing what is politically popular will get you to a correct understanding of those issues. This is to say nothing of genuinely complicated issues like monetary policy, banking and healthcare regulation and international trade - all of which Trump believes he knows but based on my conversations with the man, I'm convinced he does not. It's like taking over a chess game in the middle of the match, when all you know is the rules for checkers. Mayhem is about the best you can hope for.

But… I’ll still vote for him.

And I’ll do so because I believe I know what motivates Hillary and Bernie Sanders. I believe that Hillary and Bernie, like Obama before them, is motivated by principles which will lead to exactly the wrong thing to do. Their principles are based entirely on demonizing ‘good’ behavior, and empowering ‘bad’. In their world being ‘colorblind’ and focusing on merit alone, is to be a hate filled, misogynist, racist nazi. And that, my friends, is no way to run a country.

There is one other thing. Trump is a wild card. But he’s a wild card with an angry and largely illiterate base. Read the comments section on Kevin Williamson’s “Father Fuhrer” piece and you’ll see what I mean. Kevin wrote the piece in his typical inflammatory style, and it was widely (and I believe intentionally) misinterpreted by the commenters, who now call him a liberal and threaten to kill him in a post Trump purge. These people aren’t the most capable, and Kevin is no wilting flower, so I’m sure it’s no big deal to him. But it says something important about them.

What might be even scarier though is that it's at least possible that Trump’s supporters didn’t actually misinterpret Kevin’s piece intentionally at all, and instead did it because they lack the ability to reason well enough to know better. I’m not talking some archaic Hegelian dialog about the nature of god and man here, but simple reading comprehension. They got the words wrong. A great many of them that were central to the piece. Kevin argued for free will and liberty and they accused him of advocating murder. It’s as if the comments section was all written in crayon. Deeply disturbing stuff.

It reminds me vaguely of the death threats I got for being one of those ‘hedge fund derivative guys” who “ruined the economy” in 2008. There really isn’t any ‘thought’ involved, because the people doing the screaming aren’t really capable of it. If this is the same kind of thing, then they aren’t making any sense because they don’t understand the first thing about the thing they’re angry about. There is no cause and effect. But these commenters have all been raised in a culture where ‘anger’ is considered the equivalent of real expertise. The more anger you have, the more your opinion ‘should matter’. If they sound like liberals in that regard I don't think that's a mistake. And like I said about liberals that’s no way to run a country.

Anyway, I would vote for Trump at the head of a know nothing mob of illiterates, before I vote for Hillary who will get vanishingly close to being 100% wrong on principle. But we shouldn’t be too deluded about what a Trump presidency will mean. If there is any good that comes of it for broader America, it will be haphazard and accidental. And that may be in the face of real and meaningful harm done to placate the most illiterate (and yet most vocal portions) of his base. I guess at the end of the day I believe that stupidity in the name of nationalism is almost as bad as stupidity in the name of international socialism. But maybe that's just me.

Give me an even halfway decent conservative Supreme Court nominee, concealed carry reciprocity, and frighten a few spoiled reporters into actual objectivity, and I will consider my interests respected by a future Trump administration. To hope for more than that is in my opinion, overly optimistic. And a zamboni or two that run on time isn't going to change my mind about it.

Sunday, March 20, 2016

My $0.02 on Trump



Reading sources from Salon to National Review you would think Trump sprouted horns, cloven hoofs, and was eating babies on live television.  Charges of hate speech, inciting groups like Black Lives Matter to violence, and all around general evilness have been laid at Trump based on his words. 

To me Trump reminds me of the more brash sales guys I used to work under years ago as a technical support / applications engineer type.  These guys were in industrial fields where you dealt with men almost 100% of the time. Bravado and brash talk got the customer’s attention and would make the sale.  The words themselves in reality, didn’t have much substance.  “Yes! We can make it work!”  “Our product is the best!  Awesome! Because dammit we have the best people working for us!” It was all raw confidence over substance as the words below the shiny emotional surface were in fact empty.  It was up to us technical guys to fill in the substance which was often to our collective chagrin.  A running joke in the office between us was, “So Al just sold another pump that can transport rocks at the temperature of the sun and the pressure of a black hole”.  He sold the job, we had to make it work.  At worst, the sales guy made promises that were hard to fill 100%.  

In a way the sales presentation was a bit like a method used by the execrable Deepak Chopra.  For those of you unfamiliar with Chopra, he is sort of a new age guru that is a master of using NLP patterns  to con people into buying his books or paying his speaking fees.  I had the unfortunate task of listening to one of his presentations.  I watched people around the room slip into a warm and fuzzy trance listening to him speak while I desperately wanted to put on my headphones and listen to ANYTHING but this man speak.  Deepak Chopra doesn’t really say anything.  What he speaks is a pile of warm bullshit wrapped in silk!  If you let your emotions rule, he seems so deep, profound, and wonderful.  The reality is there is nothing of substance to what he is saying.  For fun, try this Deepak Chopra quote generator. 

While Deepak words sooth and beguile, Trump’s words shock.  Trump triggers the darker angels of human nature to come forth; the darker angels of emotion and action.  For some, Trump is a lightning rod attracting and focusing the frustrations of many who have suffered from over a decade of anemic economic growth and the rising tide of political correctness.  For this group their own fevered hopes and imagination fill in the broad vacuum of Trump’s rhetoric:

Men in their prime working age have witnessed more than a decade of stagnant wages, economic (housing) bubbles that for many destroyed their savings, and a flood of immigrants (legal and illegal) that now dominate construction, retail, and manufacturing jobs.  They have watched their working class neighborhoods turned a Central American barrio, their children’s public school now non-English speaking, and their neighbors are now violent gang members.  If it isn’t the flood coming in from the southern border it is the US government (with organizations like the Catholic Charities aiding and abetting) forcibly relocated people of a hostile and alien culture into their towns and cities.  What is one to make when people who VOTE in a caucus speak no English but only Somali? 

These men vote for people who promise to build a wall and then do not fund it.  The elites treat them with contempt and these men know it.  At best, there was no choice other than to stay home on election night as revenge for being lied to (i.e. Romney’s failed bid for the Presidency).  To these men, Trump with a single phrase “I will build a wall!” and declaring that at least a pause in Islamic immigration is prudent was bolt of lightning to their souls!  It didn’t matter if Trump was cozying up  with the Clintons in the past and it didn’t matter he had no record of activism for controlling the border.  It only mattered that he was not of the ilk that had lied to them many times over before; the political and economic elite that dominates both parties. As john Derbyshire refers to elites as, “The donor class”.

The anti-Zionist and the 14/88 crowd see him as a man who will divest the USA of anything to do with Israel, if not outright expel Jews from US shores.  I found this sentiment very strong with those who equate the Cultural Marxist / Social Justice Warrior crowd almost exclusively as Jewish phenomenon.  For the sake of argument, I posted this clip of Trump vowing support of Israel (to the point he sounded like a Neocon) on a couple blogs run by the Jewish = SJW types.  This Youtube clip however in each case never made it out of moderation (start at the 10:30 mark).




To most on the Left and many on the Right, Trump is a Boggart, a creature that becomes whatever they fear the most.  Trump is a Nazi, a KKK Grand Wizard, a Fascist, a Liberal in Conservative clothing, or a mortal threat to the republic itself!  Each in my humble opinion have a specific fear but with a common reason:  Nationalism.

Libertarians: Trump will destroy the economy via protectionism and cutting off necessary immigration. Immigration will save the social security from collapse!   I have sympathy for the Libertarians as I was pretty much one in my youth.  Libertarianism has a strong appeal to those with ability and ambition for it is a philosophy of “please get out of the way and leave me alone”.  Where Libertarianism has a fatal flaw is its ethos that all people are equal in potential.  For anyone who has had to deal with large groups of NAM / non-European immigrants (both legal and illegal) and the social pathologies that come with them, this is not the case.  LEGAL immigrants are now committing crime rates at a higher rate than native born citizens.  Legal immigrants go through an extensive background check so they should be committing crimes at a far lower rate.  When you add in the toxic effects of illegal immigration, the crime stats get even worse.  A nationalist government would put an end to all this, like was done from 1924 until 1965 when the US government turned the flood of immigration down to a trickle (with emphasis on allowing immigration from norther European nations).

The Donor Class:  Cheap labor, cheap labor, and more cheap labor.  Meat packing plants get low cost, easily replaced, and compliant labor.  Construction companies get men who happily take cash under the table, working off the books (no need to pay workman’s comp).  Uber rich like Zuckerberg (a man who has a face that at times, I think I could enjoy punching for an eternity) get indentured programmers compliments of the H1-B and other visa programs.  Nationalism would end the “cheap labor” gravy train.  I put “cheap” in quotes because the labor is actually very expensive when you count the costs not borne by their employer.  As an example, it is common for research labs to bring in foreign worker and pay them so little they end up on welfare. 



 “Wait HILN!  They are not allowed to receive welfare!” 

Yes that is true, but their children born on US soil are a different story.  I know personally of several cases where visa holders collected WIC at the behest of their children (US citizens by birth).  Mind you, these are people with professional STEM degrees on the welfare rolls.  The same is true with immigrants all over the spectrum.  There is also the cost as immigrant children flood school systems who are from cultures where even literacy is rare.  How much does it cost taxpayers to fund a school full of special need kids while daddy works at $8 per hour at the packing plant while mommy cleans hotel rooms for less than minimum wage?  Nationalism would put an end to this farce.

The Left:  Nationalism is to the Left as what Satanism is to the Catholic Church. I am at a loss to try to explain the reason and logic behind stunts such as showing up at a Trump rally in a KKK hood.  The best I can come up with is the leadership of the Left needs immigration to bring in more voters.   The rest of the crowd are just useful idiots (see the previous link for an example).  Friday I was on the NY subway listening to a group of older black men and women loudly discussing Trump.  They all agreed and feared that Trump would take away their social security checks.  Where on earth did Trump say this?  In fact, he has said the opposite…  To them Trump will take the food off their table.

So where do I stand on Trump?  Ted Cruz is by far my first choice.  However, Ted isn’t going to get the nomination.  He won’t win the closed primaries coming up in the East as his overt evangelical style just doesn’t play well there. Plus Cruz made a major misstep on bringing on board people from the Establishment to his campaign.  To those who are not 100% sold on Trump, Cruz just became another GOPe lackey.  Cruz is now perceived to be the Establishment candidate whether or not he intended to be so.   

Trump is my second choice.

Why would I vote for a man for whom I just spent multiple paragraphs stating his words have little substance?  I am looking at Trump in spite of what he says or doesn’t say.

His tax plan isn’t half bad and certainly better than anything the Sea Hag is going to come up with.

He has surrounded himself with some very capable and serious people.  A good executive knows that he doesn’t know everything.  Very bright people often make disastrous managers because they believe only they can know everything and perish trying to micro-manage every aspect of the world around them.  Jimmy Carter to me is a perfect example as a man who insisted on scheduling the use of the White House tennis courts while the economy and Iran went up in flames.  My memory of Trump as a manager goes back to the dark days of New York City before the Giuliani administration turned the city around.  New York was the city that couldn’t get anything done.  A blaring embarrassment was the Wollman Rink which for years languished as a rebuilding project turned into a massive and expensive cluster fuck of biblical proportions.  The local news stations harped on how something so straightforward couldn’t be done as a symptom of a New York that just didn't function anymore.  Trump came to the rescue.  Trump didn’t re-build that rink with his own hands.  He knew how to get the right people in the right positions and the right way to motivate them to get results.

So Trump to me is a crap shoot.  Will I get border enforcement?  Maybe…  Will I get to see government spending brought under control?  Maybe…   Will I see any chance of any of that happening if a GOPe candidate like ¡Jeb! get nominated out of the convention?  Oh hell no!  It will 100% be another George W Presidency of open borders, out of control spending, and a Federal reserve that papers over the mess with more quantitative easing.  We will be basically on the road to the 3rd Century of Rome economically and socially.