Saturday, June 25, 2022

To arms against blackmail... and 'Replacement Theory'... and the suborned Court

You know I've beat a drum about blackmail many times, showing how this method of sabotage and control-over-elites has been a favorite of spies - especially Russian - since czarist times, and how utterly consistent it is with the behavior of an ever-more compromised Republican political caste. As if any other theory could even-rmotely account for what we have seen for two decades, and worsening every year?

I've expressed hope that Prez JoBee might offer clemency in order to lure victims into the open and thus shatter the extortion rings that clearly control hundreds of sellouts high level puppets like Lindsey Graham. This would be the diametric opposite of Trumpian pardons to keep traitors silent. These would encourage revelations of searing light.

And if the offer gets no takers, or brings down a few Democrats along with the entire Foxite caste? Then what's the harm?

Specifically referring to today's headlines, those liars who lied in order to get on the Supreme Court… and the lying senators who abetted Moscow Mitch’s schemes… need a little (just a little) sympathy, since it is so blatantly obvious that all (or nearly all) of them are being blackmailed. There is one possible soft landing for the bravest of those cowards. YOU should make the offer to JB!  No matter what the blackmailers have on you, the first couple to step forward and take-one for Amerivan will be a hero, and remembered that way.


Alas though. Clearly I am getting nowhere with these proposals! 

But a friend offered up a suggestion last month that I hadn't thought of. Instead of calling for courage and patriotism from those who are being successfully blackmailed... 

...how about summoning forth those on whom blackmail attempts failed?

Attempts to lure married men with attractive come-ons? That's often how it begins. But suppose you were in a Moscow hotel and got the inevitable offer (to have sex in a room with hidden cameras rolling)... and turned it down... isn't that something to testify - even brag - about? 

The initial phases of most of these traps are usually innocuous enough that even if you fell for the initial lure, you can still say "F-you and be damned!" and often the extortionists just go away. It's usually the second or third "we just want one more thing" that traps you in their clutches, forever.  (And yes, this correlates perfectly with Madison Cawthorne's testimony about raampant GOP "sex orgies.")


Has that happened to you? Did you get offered a come-on lure to compromise yourself... and refuse? 


That's still valid info! If so and if we got enough such stories, might it finally be enough to break this thing open? 


== Replacement Theory? ==


There is an inconvenient truth here. You will not defeat this insanity and treason on moral grounds. 


If you shout - rightfully - that 'replacement theory' is as racist as reversing Roe is oppressively sexist, you'll be correct. And you'll not be confronting the enemy on ground that matters to them. Moreover, you are ignoring what's important to the fence sitters who can demolish the insanity, if we win enough of them over. 


(Stop dismissing that possibility! The Mad MAGAconfederate treason teeters on the edge of demographic collapse, their reason for desperate cheating. ALL we need is less than a million 'ostrich republicans' to get their heads yanked out of the Fox hole, and the whole thing will shatter!)


Try actually, actually looking at these people, the non-college whites who are being dangerously stoked on hysterical fear. They have one thing in common with you, a drug-like sanctimony-high that their incantations make them RIGHT!


Sure, you are mostly on the right side of both justice and history, believing in a future of inclusion and progress and science. You have facts on your side and they do not. So? The emotions are the same! 


Moreover, being right does not validate your tactics, especially when it comes to wokedly focusing on symbolisms instead of pragmatic victory. Especially, demonizing non-college whites--and now Latinos and working class Blacks--can be extremely counter-productive. As I show in Polemical Judo.


Dig it. The core of their being, manipulated by Fox every night, is not centrally racism or sexism, which are dog whistles for the unwashed. Dog whistles that enrage you into ignoring pragmatic tactics.


Think, will you, about the oligarchs who are funding this drive to turn America's Civil War hot? Clearly, their aim is to take all power and restore feudalism. O? Is that goal thwarted by the powerless?


The enemy that's railed-against most on Fox - try tuning in and tracking it - is a rival power demographic - one that actually stands in the way of the oligarchic putsch. That power clade is ...nerds. Every fact using profession. 


Check out how often Fox-heads, some of them former Rhodes Scholars from Ivy League schools, rail against the very idea of universities and higher education! Then notice how often the fundamental emotional driver raved at the audience is... macho.


Guns. The 'War on Men.' De-masculinization... incels... 


Start tabulating... and then asking why is this particular core theme of anti-nerd machismo the thing they spend the most time yammering about? 


If you actually look, that's when - even if too lazy to read Polemical Judo - you might start to 'get' why direct demands for fact-based wagers so terrify these idiots.


Facts have a liberal bias. They could be our greatest ally. If it weren't for the penchant of the left to hate their allies, far more than their enemies.



== Flawed… but often good… ==


Finally, here's an interesting story. 

San Francisco-born Wong Kim Ark returned to the city of his birth in 1895 after visiting family in China, but he was refused re-entry. John Wise, an openly anti-Chinese bigot and the collector of customs in San Francisco who controlled immigration into the port, wanted a test case that would deny U.S. citizenship to ethnic Chinese residents. But Wong fought his case all the way to the Supreme Court, which ruled on March 28, 1898 that the 14th Amendment guaranteed U.S. citizenship to Wong and any other person born on U.S. soil. 

The Wong Kim Ark case established the Birthright Citizenship clause and led to the dramatic demographic transformation of the U.S. The U.S.-born children and grandchildren of immigrants from Asia and Latin America are among the nation's fastest-growing populations. They are expected to be the majority of the country by mid-century.

Why do I mention this? Or the fact that the father of modern China - Sun Yat-Sen - got all of his support to keep up the struggle from American sympathizers?

Because we have always been a split personality people. And if you only dredge history for examples of our bad side, in order to stoke cautionary guilt trips, you turn yourself into a dishonest shrieker who ignores all the good folk who kept us moving forward.

Want proof that the NET effect has been forward? 

Try looking in a mirror.




200 comments:

Larry Hart said...

Paradoctor in the previous comments:

IVF illegal? What of the children born with the help of IVF, such as my daughter? Is she to be grandfathered in, or is she retroactively illegal?


It's not your daughter who is the problem. It's all of those other fertilized ova which were murdered in the process of creating your daughter.

* * *

Dr Brin:

Raging at Manchin is nonsense and counterproductive. Sinema might be replaced in AZ by someone better. JM is the best you can hope for from West freaking Virginia


Unfortunately, that is exactly true. The problem isn't that Manchin votes against most of the Democratic platform. The problem is that the Senate is so close that we have the majority only by Kamala Harris's tie-breaking vote. If we had the 60 Democratic Senators we had for a bit in 2009, Manchin's defections would be irrelevant.

Meanwhile, it is only because of Manchin and Sinema that we have the majority at all. So whether you like their votes on individual issues or not, without them, Mitch McConnell would be majority leader. At the very least, we wouldn't have Ketanji Brown Jackson on the court were that the case.

Larry Hart said...

Dr Brin in the main post:

Specifically referring to today's headlines, those liars who lied in order to get on the Supreme Court… and the lying senators who abetted Moscow Mitch’s schemes… need a little (just a little) sympathy, since it is so blatantly obvious that all (or nearly all) of them are being blackmailed.


Nope. Sorry, but I hate them with a white hot passion, and I hope they die in disgrace after whatever they're being blackmailed with becomes public anyway. I'd have sympathy for their suffering the effects of blackmail if they defied their blackmailers. Instead, they hurt me and mine in order to remain comfortable. No sympathy here.

Jon S. said...

In fact, it's entirely possible that such deals are being made. The Jan 6 Committee had to go into recess until mid-July in order to process a large amount of evidence that they apparently received between sessions 3 and 4. Sounds like somebody's turning States Evidence in order to buy lenience - a classic prosecutorial technique.

Larry Hart said...

It's not just me (emphasis mine) :

https://www.electoral-vote.com/evp2022/Senate/Maps/Jun25.html#item-1

Meanwhile, the 5-6 conservative justices apparently don't care, but they have made a joke of stare decisis. It is true that the Supreme Court has reversed its own decisions many times, most famously in Brown v. Board of Education. That is because a reversal makes sense when it becomes clear that the past decision is not working out as intended (e.g., separate is not, actually, equal), or is otherwise doing enormous harm. Otherwise, because people build their lives, their businesses, their future plans, etc. around the status quo, the Court has a duty to avoid yanking the rug out from under them. Or, at least, it had a duty. The Dobbs decision is not based on new information, or on harms being done that were not foreseen in 1973. It is based on the current justices not liking the reasoning of the justices from half a century ago. And once that Pandora's Box is opened, then every Supreme Court decision is open to reconsideration and revision. Maybe someone will soon challenge Marbury v. Madison, for example.

Larry Hart said...

The Onion is merciless:

https://www.theonion.com/supreme-court-votes-5-4-to-reclassify-women-as-service-1849106924

Supreme Court Votes 5-4 To Reclassify Women As Service Animals


Tony Fisk said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tony Fisk said...

Blackmail may well be a significant factor in many cases. I suspect the background supporters who don't attract a lot of attention is a good place to start looking for evidence.

Coincidentally, as this post came out, another David (Roberts @drvolts) was running a thread on his thoughts on what factors govern the dour selection on the SC.

duncan cairncross said...

Re - 1968

Things are bad now - especially in America and Ukraine

But back in 1968

We all KNEW that a nuclear WW3 was inevitable before year 2000
We all KNEW that the population bomb was exploding and the only end was War and Pestilence
Violent crime and murder was rising fast
It was illegal to be Gay
Black people could not vote in many places
Women could not do many things with "their" property without a man countersigning
Lynching was still going on

Today we have the GOP, The war on women's rights, the war in Ukraine, COVID and Global Warming
All super nasty -

But we have made SUBSTANCIAL progress in the last 54 years

Tim H. said...

Relevant, if rude:

https://rudepundit.blogspot.com/2022/06/the-supreme-court-vs-united-states-part.html

It is consistent in one way, abortion will remain an option for people of means, one more way to show a lot of daylight between the "Chosen of Mammon" and the riff-raff.

Dwight Williams said...

Duncan: the point of the Trump appointees was and remains to roll back all of that progress. And I don't believe we're yet all sufficiently willing to admit how far back they want to roll back to.

I'm thinking that they're aiming for 1850.

1950 is too optimistic.

Larry Hart said...

Dwight Williams:

I'm thinking that they're aiming for 1850.


It might be more like 1650.

David Brin said...

Hm depends. First there were exceptions. Trump's best appointment - NASA dire Bridenstine - managed to protect most NASA programs from the deliberate sabotage raid that was the purpose of Artemis.

Some others appear to have been sincere conservatives, appointed to give legitimacy & cover for the monsters. Some of these are now testifying.

The SOBs probably never parsed it as betrayal. Order by their blackmailers to do certain things, they naturally rationalized it was all to the good. Because... well... lib'ruls.


But yes, the general trend of all effects was to undermine our whole Great Experiment.

Dirtnapninja said...

The idea that so-called "nerds" who staff, justify and propel the technocratic oligarchy are somehow powerless rebels while declasse truck drivers and walmart greeters are somehow oppressing silicon valley is laughable.

This isnt Cyberpunk pal. This isnt some tale where hacker rebels, street ninjas and misfits work with rebel AIs to overthrow the Man.

No, this is Burgerpunk. The mohawk haired hackers? They are all employed by google. The Rebel AIs? They are all monitoring your facebook to make sure any dissident views on covid treatments are erased. The street rebels? They are cheering on banks who froze the assets of grandmothers who donated 10 dollars to a perfectly legal protest by truckers and laughed when a police horse trampled a old woman.

Burgerpunk, where corporate sponsored riots can burn down your business, and you get arrested for trying to defend it. Burgerpunk, where trustafarians who attended elite prep schools and harvard claim to be oppressed by fentanyl addicted walmart workers. Burgerpunk where people who put "I FUCKING LOVE SCIENCE" pictures on facebook tell me unironically that a man can get pregnant and a woman can have a dick and get me fired if i disagree.

No, so-called "nerds" are not fighting the man, they are the man. They are not my friends, not my allies, not my heroes or liberators.

Larry Hart said...

The David Roberts link that Tony Fisk posted above is fascinating reading, despite being on Twitter.

https://twitter.com/drvolts/status/1540766078472572928

Cons' problem over the years is that they would nominate judges & then be "betrayed" as judges drifted left (or just moderate). Souter, Kennedy, Blackmun etc.
...
But the most most sensible & obvious explanation is that decent people, once they survey the evidence & arguments, come out in a decent/compassionate/liberal place.

Now, noticing that the smart, decent people they nominated kept coming to compassionate/moderate conclusions, they did NOT conclude, "gosh, maybe we should be more compassionate/moderate, since that's where good-faith study of the evidence seems to lead!"

Instead, they decided they needed a cult-like organization where they could create hyper-ideological zealots, people so committed to reactionary conclusions that NO amount of exposure to evidence or simple humanity could ever change their minds: thus, Federalist Society.
...
The short version is: Blackmun was a conservative, leaned anti-abortion, intended originally to make a narrow ruling. But ... he *researched*. He read. He talked to women. He opened himself to the evidence & the evidence convinced him the right to abortion needed protecting.

It is precisely that openness, that willingness to follow the evidence, that the Federalist Society was designed to crush.
...

Robert said...

This seems like a good time to note that the vast majority of truckers didn't support the protests, most of the protesters weren't truckers*, the 49-year-old woman wasn't seriously injured, and the protesters demanded the overthrow of a duly elected government in favour of one hand-picked by themselves.

Also worth noting that, while peaceful protests are legal, many of the acts committed by the protesters weren't. Some were downright reprehensible, like circling a palliative care hospital for hours blasting horns, or extorting food from a homeless shelter by threats. Because nothing says "we care about the underdog" like harassing patients dying of cancer and stealing food from the homeless.

Most of that never made it onto Fox, which seemed intent on using the protests to buttress Trump and his Republicans.



*One of the most prominent convoy leaders is a professional agitator for the oil industry.

Dwight Williams said...

Ladies, gentlemen and respected others:

"Dirtnapninja" is likely one of those people who wants us regulars here and our host Dr. Brin all either dead or in chains. I plugged the username into my search engine of choice and it came up with...a lot of pro-oligarchic stuff. A lot.

Tim H. said...

"Dirtnapninja" is disturbingly chatty for someone with that handle...

Tim H. said...

Likely says too much about my age... but an editorial cartoon with a "Reanimator" and "Jubilation T. Cornpone" seems relevant about now...

Robert said...

a lot of pro-oligarchic stuff

Also a lot of racist stuff, homophobic stuff, MRA stuff…

DP said...

As the nation divides once again into a modern version of slave states and free states, the anti abortion people want a modern version of the Fugitive Slave Act:

https://archive.ph/azRRQ

Multiple states, including Arizona, Arkansas and Texas, have sought to stem the flow of abortion-inducing pills by making their shipment through the mail illegal. Republican lawmakers in Missouri are considering a bill that would prohibit Missouri residents from getting an abortion out of state as well as penalize out-of-state medical professionals. Model legislation recently released by the antiabortion Right to Life organization would make it a felony offense to help a minor obtain an abortion across state lines. These steps by emboldened conservatives are raising concerns that cross-border investigations targeting abortion will test traditional law-enforcement cooperation among states.
The anti-abortion states are not going to stop with this ruling.

They will force their views on blue states by any means available.

Then its on to marriage equality, contraceptives, etc.

DP said...

Don't forget that the Russian oil oligarchs have been feeding money to the GOP for years via the NRA.

Many GOP lawmakers are thoroughly compromised.

If I was a foreign enemy who wanted to shatter the unity of the USA I would do all I could to overturn Roe.

Larry Hart said...

DP:

Multiple states, including Arizona, Arkansas and Texas, have sought to stem the flow of abortion-inducing pills by making their shipment through the mail illegal. Republican lawmakers in Missouri are considering a bill that would prohibit Missouri residents from getting an abortion out of state as well as penalize out-of-state medical professionals.


In what court would such laws be enforced. IIRC, the US mail is federal and may not be interfered with by states. And how would an out of state practitioner be forced to appear in the court of a different state for an activity performed in his own state?

The Fugitive Slave Act was backed up by federal marshals, and yes that's a danger if the Republicans take back congress and the presidency and pass federal laws. But until that happens, I don't see the mechanism by which states could enforce such edicts (except against their own residents, of course).

Larry Hart said...

DP:

They will force their views on blue states by any means available.


"There are some parts of New York [or Chicago], Major, that I'd advise you not to try to invade."

Larry Hart said...


https://www.electoral-vote.com/evp2022/Senate/Maps/Jun26.html#item-1

And it's not just that women have been denied meaningful access to abortion—it's far worse. The criminalization of pregnancy is already a reality for poor and minority women living in the wrong state. In Wisconsin, for example, juvenile courts can take custody of a fetus—meaning lock up a pregnant woman, for the fetus' "protection"—resulting in the detention of more than 400 women each year on suspicion of the use of controlled substances. In Oklahoma, women are being prosecuted for manslaughter for miscarriages, again on the suspicion of using drugs. And that's before we get into fetal personhood statutes, which have already passed in Georgia and Alabama.

Larry Hart said...

On "fetal personhood",

Do we really need to pass "female personhood" legislation? Whether a fetus is a person is irrelevant, unless we're going to start forcing organ donation and such in order to preserve the life of persons dependent on such things. But of course, organ donation is denounced on religious grounds. So why doesn't government-enforced slavery as an ambulatory incubator fall into that category as well?

Remember the anti-feminist arguments against the ERA, that women's equality was already implicit in the Constitution, and so the need for a separate carve out was itself demeaning to women? Not so much, apparently. Zygotes now have more rights than women to. Heck, dogs and cats have more rights than women do.

Andy said...

Also worth noting that, while peaceful protests are legal, many of the acts committed by the protesters weren't. Some were downright reprehensible, like circling a palliative care hospital for hours blasting horns, or extorting food from a homeless shelter by threats. Because nothing says "we care about the underdog" like harassing patients dying of cancer and stealing food from the homeless.

I tried to find more info on this but came up short. Can you provide some links please Robert?

DP said...

One of the fixes being proposed is to allow abortions on federal property.

I can easily see a fanatical group of MAGA folks attacking such a building with AR-15s.

Their Red State governor refuses to prosecute.

And we have a 21st century Ft. Sumpter.

A new American Civil War won't look like the last (Atlanta, for example, will not secede with the rest of Georgia).

It will look more like the Troubles in Northern Ireland with bombings and assassinations.

DP said...

Republican-controlled states also are setting up potential constitutional showdowns by banning abortion pills, which directly conflicts with U.S. Food and Drug Administration approvals of the medications.

This effectively destroys the principle of interstate commerce.

David Brin said...

dirtnapninja OMG I am sorry you fried your brains on drugs. Seriously. Or are you inherently that stoopid? If you had five cents to your name, I would demand a wager whether your shrieking howl had anything, whatsoever, to do with what I posted here. There is no correlation, whatsoever, between your spewed accusations and anything I said.

Hey goombah. I'm actually waaaaaaaay over here.

For the record, though. The 'nerds" I refer to ARE powerful against the oligarchic putsch. The lawyers and civil servants, professors and civil servants, doctors and civil servants, teachers, FBI officers, bureaucrats, scientists and civil servants, are exactly and PRECISELY the ones who stymie most scvhemes of the oligarchic putsch. And they are the ones dissed and denounced on Fox every night, every hour.

BET MET NOW whether Tucker, Hannity etc spend more time attacking races and such or attacking fact professions. Oh wait. You have no money to bet and no honor to keep a wager.

Proof that our side also contains insane assholes.




locumranch said...


This is classic Brin, written from the perspective of an honest choirboy who mistakes honesty for trustworthy predictability, even though honesty implies just the opposite, as only the venial & self-interested are entirely predictable, whereas honest men answer only to their own internal compasses & moral consciences.

Our host appears to really believe that Joe Biden & various democrat party apparatchiks are 'honest men', even after 50 years of backroom politics, gunboat diplomacy, millions in kickbacks, revelations of drug-addicted offspring & family allegations of incest.

He does make a good point about the counterproductive effects of "demonizing non-college whites", but he appears to be unable to restrain himself as he dismisses them as uneducated morons who are (1) stupid, (2) emotional, (3) easily manipulated and (4) cartoonishly masculine.

Of course, these cartoon caricatures of unenlightened toxic masculinity are also the very same morons who grow his food, deliver his goods, electrify his home, fix his vehicles, maintain his roads, buy his books & protect his family.

No worries, though.

These stupid yokels are so 'stoopid' (sic) that they will welcome their new WEIRD Nerd Rulers as 'liberators', just like the jocks did in secondary school & the Afghanis did in post-invasion Afghanistan.

Without a doubt, they'll believe you when you tell them that 'Replacement Theory' is but a paranoid fantasy, right after the US Democrat Party has spent the last 10 years gloating about the pending white demographic collapse, its replacement by moar diversity & progressive rule eternal.

Most assuredly, those foolish white deplorables will never ever consider murdering you in your comfy beds once they conclude that you all are manipulative, deceptive & hate-filled.

Mock them some more because 'Pride cometh before' what exactly ?


Best

David Brin said...

"Don't forget that the Russian oil oligarchs have been feeding money to the GOP for years via the NRA.

And Sheldon Adelson's hugely and anomalously profitable Macao casinos funnel hundreds of millions into the GOP on behalf of another power.

David Brin said...

Weirdly... because it happens so rarely, locums screech, while jibbering, frothy-rabid and hateful, actually is aimed in my general direction, for a change. Not a complete strawman. One can squint (in distaste) and see how his howl is derived (in warped nastineess) from things I have said or implied.

But then, like Lincoln in 1865, I have no intention to harm his confederate 'kind'... the re-ignited treason cult that has been our loony cojoined twin for 250 years. He knows that when the Union wins a phase of the ongoing civil war, it's 'malice toweard none and charity for all. When his cult wins a phase? tsunamis of injustice and hurt... and in this case the clear intent to end it all.

Paradoctor said...

Lately I've been re-reading Eric Hoffer's "The True Believer". I find it appropriate to the present situation. He makes several points about the chaotically evil psychology of the fanatic. One is that the fanatic does not seek truth or virtue, but unity. The fanatic sees evil in the target du jour because hatred unifies the fanatical mob. It is pointless to appeal to the fanatic's self-interest because fanaticism is built upon self-contempt. And to convince a fanatic, it is sufficient to defeat him; but he will more easily become an opposite fanatic than a moderate.

Locumranch's fantasies confirm his orientation: Chaotic Evil.

Robert said...

And how would an out of state practitioner be forced to appear in the court of a different state for an activity performed in his own state?

Private bounties? Bounty hunters are a feature of the American legal system…

Robert said...

Do we really need to pass "female personhood" legislation?

It might help, but I suspect Alito et al would strike it down as unconstitutional, on the grounds that Hale or some other 17th century jurist was against it.

Odd that someone who ruled that marital rape was legal and witchcraft a crime is now part of the originalist canon, but you have an odd country.

Robert said...

Andy, I've mostly been relying on eyewitness reports from friends who live in Ottawa. Here are a couple of links for you, though.

https://ottawa.ctvnews.ca/ottawa-homeless-shelter-staff-harassed-by-convoy-protesters-demanding-food-1.5760423

https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/ottawa/health-care-stress-truck-convoy-protests-1.6335396

Dwight Williams said...

Robert, per your comment: "Also a lot of racist stuff, homophobic stuff, MRA stuff…"?

You aren't wrong. At all. And yeah, I live in the eastern suburbs of Ottawa the actual city, and I also have friends who either live(d) or work(ed) or both in the Centretown and Lowertown districts, and they told me stuff as time passed, posted imagery of their own during the Siege..."dirtnapninja" is a bloody liar who wants actual blood of their perceived enemies on their own hands, in my considered opinion.

There are people publicly promising/threatening a relaunch of the Ottawa Siege on July 1st AKA Canada Day. And we have a large number of Members of Parliament affiliated with the Conservative Party of Canada willing to stand with the Convoy Crowd.

Not welcome news to those of us who live here in Ottawa the City.

Robert said...

There are people publicly promising/threatening a relaunch of the Ottawa Siege on July 1st AKA Canada Day. And we have a large number of Members of Parliament affiliated with the Conservative Party of Canada willing to stand with the Convoy Crowd.

Let's hope the police actually take action this time.

In Calgary the weekly Beltline protesters have been at it weekly. When interviewed, a fair number of them are there for the sense of community. I wonder how many of the current protesters are the same: looking for the endorphin highs of belonging and community.

DP said...

Now this is interesting.

Now that the SC has overturned Roe, suppose state abortion bans get overturned on religious grounds?

That would mean that the states decide on abortion, but they can't decide to ban based on religious restrictions.

https://www.nbcnews.com/think/opinion/jewish-abortion-rights-advocates-use-religious-freedom-suit-access-rcna34178

That principle of religious freedom is the basis of a lawsuit brought by Congregation L’Dor Va-Dor, a synagogue in Boynton Beach, Florida, against a sweeping state abortion ban set to take effect on July 1. Congregation L’Dor Va-Dor is challenging a single law on behalf of a single religion. But the case is also a broader challenge to the anti-abortion rights movement, which conflates a right-wing Christian demand for forced birth with universal morality, and insists on subjugating the country to a sectarian code.

The new Florida law bans most abortions after 15 weeks. There are no exceptions for cases of incest, rape or human trafficking. It does allow an abortion to save a pregnant person’s life or to prevent serious physical injury. But these exceptions aren’t enough to keep the law from violating the free exercise of the Jewish faith. The congregation’s lawsuit states that the Florida law violates Jewish religious beliefs holding that abortion “is required if necessary to protect the health, mental or physical well-being of the woman,” among other reasons.

The Florida law is uninterested in the mental health of the pregnant individual and narrowly restricts its concern for physical harm. As a result, the lawsuit says, “the act prohibits Jewish women from practicing their faith free of government intrusion.” It also “threatens the Jewish people by imposing the laws of other religions upon Jews.”

Alan Brooks said...

Locum,
It’s not to fear those who grow food, fix cars, do carpentry, drive trucks—or electricians. It is the sort who get drunk and beat people up because they don’t like the way their victims look—or merely because they like to break noses.
Or, say, they break into a Capitol and break a lot of things, not due to fear of Replacement Theory but, rather because of an inchoate anger and an urge to break things. Including a nose or two.
——
Btw, this is what made me really worry about Trump:
https://amp.cnn.com/cnn/2019/01/03/politics/trump-cabinet-meeting-afghanistan-soviet-union/index.html
Even if he was shooting his mouth off, offering a sop to Russia, it is something to worry about; still.

Larry Hart said...

Dwight Williams:

"dirtnapninja" is a bloody liar who wants actual blood of their perceived enemies on their own hands, in my considered opinion.


Pronoun-wise, I think it's a safe bet to call him "him". Unless it is a 'bot, of course.

Larry Hart said...

Robert:

"Do we really need to pass "female personhood" legislation?"

It might help, but I suspect Alito et al would strike it down as unconstitutional, on the grounds that Hale or some other 17th century jurist was against it.


Maybe female citizenship was not recognized in 1789, but personhood most certainly was. In the count of persons which decides representation in Congress, women were counted. Fetuses weren't, BTW. So there's that.


"There are people publicly promising/threatening a relaunch of the Ottawa Siege on July 1st AKA Canada Day. And we have a large number of Members of Parliament affiliated with the Conservative Party of Canada willing to stand with the Convoy Crowd."

Let's hope the police actually take action this time.


Maybe Kyle Rittenhouse will go up there to protect you from an unruly mob the police aren't containing. He's a hero for doing just that in Milwaukee, after all.


In Calgary the weekly Beltline protesters have been at it weekly.


Well duh. :)

Dwight Williams said...

Ottawa does not need the likes of Kyle Rittenhouse. Ever. He'd side with the Convoy Crowd for starters, and things would spiral into horror from there, and we all know it.

Anyway, back to Dr. Brin's points of discussion, please?

Larry Hart said...

Dwight Williams:

Ottawa does not need the likes of Kyle Rittenhouse. Ever. He'd side with the Convoy Crowd for starters,


I know. I just take pyrrhic pleasure in pointing out the contradiction.

Larry Hart said...

BTW, I don't remember who it was here who pontificated that whoever leaked the Alito draft decision should be pursued and prosecuted. That was back when the intial reaction was to suppose that the leaker was a liberal. Now that the consensus seems to be that the leak was from a conservative--possibly Thomas or Alito themselves--Roberts and McConnell seem to have conveniently forgotten about investigating the leak, I wonder if anyone here has also changed their minds.

Unknown said...

Larry,

That was GMT-5.

Pappenheimer

Larry Hart said...

Ok, so suppose a woman gets into a standoff with police. A traffic altercation like Sandra Bland say, only the woman has a gun and threatens or fires upon officers. Normally, they are justified in returning fire--clear case of self-defense. But what if the woman is obviously pregnant? It's not the fetus's fault that the officers are threatened. Do they get to shoot anyway, or must they stand down, even at the risk of their own lives, to protect the fetus who isn't threatening them in any way?

Unless the accepted answer is that the adult lives must be sacrificed in order to save the fetus, then fetal personhood isn't relevant. In most cases of abortion (all exceptions duly noted), the fetus is not so much a murder victim as an unfortunate casualty.

DP said...

The Jesusland Map is starting to look plausible, even desirable.

Blue States secede and join Canada (forming the United States of Canada - USC) leaving the remaining backwards poverty stricken Red State to form the United States of Jesus (USJ)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jesusland_map

I know its not that simple, since places like Atlanta will want to stay Blue and Pennsyltucky will want to be Red.

So look for mass migrations and large numbers of deaths similar to that of post imperial India when Muslims went to Pakistan and Hindus moved to India. - with millions dying along the way.

Once things get sorted out, the USC becomes a high tech advanced tolerant multicultural society (underpopulated Canada is actively encouraging immigration from all over the world).

Without Federal funds stolen from Blue States infrastructure and military capacity of the USJ collapses.

The USC gets all the food it needs from the prairie provinces now made super productive by global warming.

The only industries left to the USJ are timber, agriculture and fossil fuels.

Climate change fucks with all of them as it makes Canada ever more desirable place to live with a temperate climate.

Raging forest fires spread even to eastern woodlands, destroying the timber industry.

The drying up of the Colorado River and Oglala Aquifer kills most of USJ agriculture leaving half the nation in a new dust bowl.

However, Texas continues to pump oil even after a 130 deg F heat dome combined with a failure of the Texas power grid results in a million dead Houstonians.

As the USC becomes the worlds new superpower, the USJ descends into a backwards uneducated third world shithole theocracy governed by rich oligarchs and tele-evangelists.

When that happens, the USC builds a great wall to keep out USJ refugees.

Larry Hart said...

creative ratf***ing...

https://www.electoral-vote.com/evp2022/Senate/Maps/Jun27.html#item-5

There's also another potential problem here that we have not seen mentioned anywhere. Let's say someone in a blue state wants to do harm to someone who lives in a red state, for example, a young female Republican state senator. Well, the blue stater can acquire some mifepristone or misoprostol, put it into a very clearly labeled box, and mail it to their red state foe. There is nothing in that entire chain of events that is the slightest bit illegal from the perspective of the blue stater. But the red stater could end up in serious trouble if red states really do try to criminalize abortifacients-via-mail.

Larry Hart said...

DP:

The Jesusland Map is starting to look plausible, even desirable.


The problem for me is that Wisconsin and Michigan are no longer reliably in the blue wall. So Illinois is an island. We'd be kinda like West Berlin in that scenario.

Tony Fisk said...

Jesusland map fails to take the electoral distribution map into consideration.
Nowhere in the country is pure blood (red or blue), and you certainly can't judge by state boundaries. Do you really think Texans are all in with their Governor's edicts?

Dwight Williams said...

I know multiple Texans who would fight to keep their home towns/counties in the "United States(?) of Canada" zone. Same with urban Albertans in Canada in resistance to the UCP/Wildrose/Wexit/Maverick crowd seeking to drag Alberta into "Jesusland/Trumpistan", placed like Edmonton, Calgary, and so on.

Larry Hart said...

https://www.electoral-vote.com/evp2022/Senate/Maps/Jun27.html#item-10

The reason is that partisanship is now so strong that Democrats and Republicans have completely different sets of facts that they base their opinions on. A recent CBS News/YouGov poll showed that Democrats were 41 points more likely to say the economy was in good shape than Republicans. Democrats were also 29 points more likely to say the number of jobs had increased this year. The latter is just raw factual data, but Republicans don't want to believe that jobs have increased because that would make Joe Biden look good. So the facts have to take a backseat to the goal of making Biden look bad.

The results of other questions showed a similar divide. Republicans were 22 points more likely than Democrats to say they were forced to cut back on driving due to the economy. They even reported much more (25%) delay in getting online purchases delivered. To Democrats the economy is doing pretty well. To Republicans it is a complete disaster. There is virtually no agreement even on basic facts now.

Howard Brazee said...

It's odd that many of the people who push the "replacement" theory also fight Roe vs Wade. Abortion for the rich and babies for the poor should be what they fear.

Robert said...

Ok, so suppose a woman gets into a standoff with police. A traffic altercation like Sandra Bland say, only the woman has a gun and threatens or fires upon officers. Normally, they are justified in returning fire--clear case of self-defense. But what if the woman is obviously pregnant? It's not the fetus's fault that the officers are threatened. Do they get to shoot anyway, or must they stand down, even at the risk of their own lives, to protect the fetus who isn't threatening them in any way?

Yes, they can fire back. They felt threatened, and so are entitled to use deadly force (by legal precedent and custom). If the fetus is harmed that is the woman's fault, because she didn't take the appropriate steps to protect it; indeed, she was the one to provoke the incident in the first place, and escalated it by having a gun. Bloody hell, women are being jailed for homicide after having a miscarriage right now — how do you think the courts will respond in Gilead?

Robert said...

Blue States secede and take over Canada (forming the United States of Canada - USC) leaving the remaining backwards poverty stricken Red State to form the United States of Jesus (USJ)

There, fixed that for you.

Cesar A. Santos said...

The problem with abortion is that it goes beyond politics and the crazed ideological divide. Many people who think of themselves as 'libruls' are disgusted by it, because it is the offing of another human being in development, and the borderline Nazi-Soviet dehumanizing rhetoric used to support it. They know they can't say anything against abortion or they will be crucified by the peaceful and compassionate libruls. But they won't move a finger to help it either. Further complicating the matter: pregnancy is voluntary (except in case of rape). Don't want to get pregnant? Anticonceptive methods are plentiful. In last case go oral, anal or close your legs.

Paradoctor said...

Robert:
About "Sense of community": I've been re-reading Eric Hoffer's "The True Believer", which I find appropriate to the present political moment. He notes that the fanatic does not care about truth or virtue; instead it's about unity and that sense of community. To Hoffer, the fanatic is a wretched creature, self-hating, petty, vindictive, and without principle. You do not convince them by reason, for they did not arrive at their disposable obsessions by reason. You convince them by defeating them; but even then, they will less likely to become reasonable moderates than opposite fanatics.

Larry Hart said...

Cesar A. Santos:

Many people who think of themselves as 'libruls' are disgusted by it, because it is the offing of another human being in development,


Do I need to say it slowly to be understood? There are two competing interests involved--the mother's and the fetus's. The fact that one is alive doesn't force the other into slavery.


They know they can't say anything against abortion or they will be crucified by the peaceful and compassionate libruls.


As opposed to people who recieve actual death threats from conservatives for saying that the 2020 election wasn't fixed, or for performing the function of election official?


pregnancy is voluntary (except in case of rape). Don't want to get pregnant? Anticonceptive methods are plentiful. In last case go oral, anal or close your legs.


You're not paying attention.

Republican states are passing anti-abortion laws which make no exception for rape. Thomas has also clearly indicated that they're going after legal contraception next. So no, pregnancy is not necessarily voluntary. In the cases when it is voluntary, the only reason a woman would seek an abortion is for medical necessity, and she'd hardly do so lightly.

If you were being logically consistent, you would have to support charging any rapist with child endangerment for inserting a fetus into a situation where it might be aborted. In fact, under the notion of "fetal personhood", considering the percentage of natural miscarriages (not abortions) which occur, any insemination might be considered an act of child endangerment.

And even if one values a fetus's life more than a woman's, how does that justify preventing abortions in the case of ectopic pregnancy or other such conditions in which the fetus won't be born alive no matter what?

* * *

This isn't in response to Mr Santos, but let me again repeat--the question of fetal personhood should already be settled, especially for "originalists" or "textualists".

From the US Constitution, Article I Section 2:


Representatives and direct Taxes shall be apportioned among the several States which may be included within this Union, according to their respective Numbers, which shall be determined by adding to the whole Number of free Persons, including those bound to Service for a Term of Years, and excluding Indians not taxed, three fifths of all other Persons.


Since the founding of the country, the census has counted women and children among the "whole number of free persons". It has not counted zygotes, embryos, or fetuses. So don't try to tell me that anyone in 1789 presumed that a fetus was a legal person.

Larry Hart said...

Robert:

Yes, they can fire back. They felt threatened, and so are entitled to use deadly force (by legal precedent and custom).


I know that's how it works. That also justifies abortion. The woman feels threatened, and so is entitled to defend herself with deadly force. I have no illusions that the logic would actually be applied, but my point is that fetal personhood is irrelevant if the police are justified in killing an innocent "person" in their own defense.

Larry Hart said...

Not sure why, but I can't deny it...

https://www.nytimes.com/2022/06/26/opinion/america-the-merciless.html

When it comes to someone fighting for his life on death row or someone longing for the right to die at life’s end, America generally goes with the least empathetic option.

David Brin said...

There's an irony here. Both white supremacists lefty woke-ists are expressing fierce tribal patriotism, hormonally no different than those chanting loyalto to flags or crowns or totems in Sparta, Dahomey or Delhi or Akkad across 6000 years. What differs is the tradeoff between fear and horizons of inclusion in the _definition of 'my tribe,' where fear is the strongest factor determining where those borders set.

In those where fear is strongest, those tribal borders or 'horizons' are close-in, as was the case for most of our ancestors (hence 'history.') As fear declines, those boundaries of inclusion tend (depending also on culture) to spread wider and include more kinds of people, then more until "people' itself becomes a broader term.

I describe it all here...
http://davidbrin.blogspot.com/2015/07/altruistic-horizons-our-tribal-natures.html

...and no question I am loyal to this general process, since my 'kind' were a pariah type, just a generation ago. Moreover, I deem this historically rare reflex to expansively include the next and then the next prviously marginalized group to be humanity's best hope to achieve our potential, and possibly be first to reach the galaxy. By enhancing justice and freedom. By ceasing the insanity of prejudice, whose main outcome is the waste of talent. By expanding horizons.

Our problem with today's Mad Right is that they are so drenched in fear that thay think their loyalty borders must be defined by skin color and lack of education, along with frantic obeisance to a restored feudal oligarchy, as in times of old. But 60 centuries show that approach was tried and it never, ever worked.

The problem with the woke left is not the direction they want us to travel, toward ever-widening horzons of inclusion. It is with their stunning lack of perspective. Historical, scientific, cultural. They have one loyalty, as fiercely and emotionally clutched as any past patriotism to country, tribe of flag. That ferocious and vehement loyalty is to the otherness endeavor itself. Today's forward edge of the project of inclusion.

Ironically, of course, NONE of the other tribes, nations, cultures that they now extoll as so much better than the West ever had such an outward/inclusive cultural mania. ONLY the culture that raised them - with Hollywood's relentless century of diversity/tolerance/eccentricity/individualist memes - only that culture ever pushed this Otherness Project. Hence, while pouring spite toward all the older symbols of the West and America (flags, anthems and such) their every waking moment is spent chanting incantations that are almost unique to the culture that raised them.

I have found that this irony - it loops around on itself in brain-hurting ways - is almost impossible for reflexive partisans to grasp. They suspect a trick. They assume I am arguing against the project! Trying to undemine it!

In fact I am as loyal to the Project as they are, and arguably more so! Because I care deeply about how self-righteousness and sanctimony poisons cause so many to lose perspective, or any ability to appraise - and re-appraise - tactics!

Re-appraising and replacing failed tactics is how to succeed at moving toward those great strategic goals.

On the other hand, rigidity, obeisance to symbolism instead of pragmatic victories, the spurning of allies and narrowing of purity standards for coalition... these are sicknesses that have hamstrung the movement so often, in the past and threaten is very survival, today.


scidata said...

Doctrine is the mind killer.

Larry Hart said...

Dr Brin:

The problem with the woke left is not the direction they want us to travel, toward ever-widening horzons of inclusion. It is with their stunning lack of perspective.


It seems to me that the problem with the "woke left" is that they forcefully insist on unpopular policies which the general culture then assumes are held by all liberals. The public turns against liberals because they equate us all with the loudest whiners of the left.

The problem with the mad right is almost the opposite. The public presumes that their loudest whiners are outliers and don't reflect on good solid American conservatism, whereas those like Marjorie Taylor Greene and Matt Gaetz and the Texas GOP platform really do represent the agenda of the Republican Party.

Larry Hart said...

Robert:

"And how would an out of state practitioner be forced to appear in the court of a different state for an activity performed in his own state?"

Private bounties? Bounty hunters are a feature of the American legal system…


But then what would I be charged with? "I haven't even set foot in your state until I was dragged here by your hired thugs. How could I have committed a crime in Trumplandia?"

"You broke Trumplandian state law when you drove a Trumplandian girl from the airport to an abortion clinic."

"But I was entirely within the corporate boundaries of Illinois that entire time. I wasn't fucking subject to Trumplandian law. Trumplandia has no jurisdiction over what I do in my own state."

At the very least, there's be grounds for a counter-suit over false arrest.

Dwight Williams said...

The answer will run like this: "We in Trumpistan gave ourselves global jurisdiction at the founding of our Great Country. Anything you do, no matter where you live, is subject to the will of our Great Family. We don't recognize the concept of 'false arrest', either. So...what lawsuits? You can't file lawsuits over something we'll never admit is real."

Larry Hart said...

@Dwight Williams,

I tend to share your cynicism, but my fictional "Trumplandia" was meant as a placeholder for an existing state (like Missouri), not a brand new country. Under existing US law, I just don't think one state's law can be invoked to prosecute an action taken in a different state, no matter how much they want to.

For example, back when gambling was illegal anywhere except Nevada, Illinois could not have prosecuted me for gambling in Las Vegas.

Der Oger said...

Many people who think of themselves as 'libruls' are disgusted by it, because it is the offing of another human being in development, and the borderline Nazi-Soviet dehumanizing rhetoric used to support it.

I don't now much about the Soviet side (except for using mass rapes as a strategy of war we currently also see in use in Ukraine), but the Nazi stance was pro-abortion to non-Aryans and "Life Unworthy Of Life" only.

They opposed abortions in aryan women (and having an actual breeding programm called Lebensborn, roughly translated as "Fount of Life", to increase the number of aryan children born). Nazism was also a "Mother Cult", elevating the mother to produce children to the F├╝hrer.

Also, I am quite sure that the upper Nazis could get an abortion if they needed one, to get rid of the results of extra-marital affairs. Goebbels in particular was known to have many affairs.

So, they did what the right wingers always do: Enforce the rules on the majority of the population, and ignore them when they don't suit the powerful. Conservative or authoritarian morality always looks fine on paper, but in practice, it is often nothing but sheer hypocrisy.

After the downfall, the abortion paragraph in the penal code remained mostly unchanged; it was taken over into the federal republic. There were some changes in the nineties, making abortions legal. Up until now, it was illegal to advertise abortion services for doctors, but the related section got dropped a week ago or so.

Robert said...

pregnancy is voluntary (except in case of rape)

In the politest possible way, this is bovine excrement.

Birth control fails. Birth control can be sabotaged. There is a tremendous amount of misinformation about birth control out there, especially in communities poorly served by public health and/or dominated by various religious groups.

The same women who are most affected by an abortion ban are also the ones least able to access information and methods of birth control.

Der Oger said...

At the very least, there's be grounds for a counter-suit over false arrest.

Which ...
... in turn would allow bounty hunters to track down prosecutors, judges, juries and their own ilk for that offense, and haul them back to Illinois?

Starting a vendetta-style cycle of arrests and prosecutions between states?

Or do I miss something?

Robert said...

To Hoffer, the fanatic is a wretched creature, self-hating, petty, vindictive, and without principle.

I've been having a Hoffer moment too.

Reminds me of the old saying: either at your feet or at your throat…

locumranch said...


This would be hilarious if they weren't so tragic, the insane circular logic displayed by our intelligentsia when their abstract models diverge from observable reality ...

As in the case of our clueless politicians on both sides who threaten to destroy our legal system & government institutions (our village, as it were) in order to save it.

As in the case of today's G7 which has concluded that the dysfunctional, poorly conceived & counterproductive sanctions against Russia should work (nay, WILL WORK) but only if they are redoubled and redoubled again, leading our glorious leaders to conclude that the Russian Oil boycott will suddenly work if they boycott harder.

As in the case of our current artificial global gas & oil shortage, created to force our gas & oil dependent global economy to become CO2 neutral & climate friendly, even as our global economy collapses because it's gas & oil dependent, leading our irrational leaders to double-down on their self-imposed gas & oil shortage as the means to save our dying gas & oil dependent global economy.

As in the case of sex-withholding women who once promised men 'free-love' if they would support abortion-on-demand, only to withhold anyway, but who now threaten to withhold sex even harder from lovelorn men who no longer support abortion-on-demand.

This is the very definition of INSANITY, this insistence to repeat the same failed policies over & over and expect a different result, all while rejecting the CRITICISM offered up by those few outspoken 'evil critics' who know that criticism is the only known antidote for error.

You know the 'evil critics' I'm talking about, don't you? Critics like Cesar, BurgerBoy & myself. You know, the ones who don't wish to engage in insanity HARDER while expecting a different outcome?


Best
______

@Alan_B: I get your desire to protect you & yours from potential harm because it's a universal desire shared by yokels, but you weaken your own protections when you deny others the protection that you desire.

Robert said...

So don't try to tell me that anyone in 1789 presumed that a fetus was a legal person.

If they were going for 'original intent' they could at least go for quickening. And look at what actually happened…

https://www.nationalgeographic.com/history/article/the-complex-early-history-of-abortion-in-the-united-states

Larry Hart said...

Der Oger:

Starting a vendetta-style cycle of arrests and prosecutions between states?

Or do I miss something?


No, you didn't miss something. That's how civil wars start.

Robert said...

But then what would I be charged with? "I haven't even set foot in your state until I was dragged here by your hired thugs. How could I have committed a crime in Trumplandia?"

That would be a stronger argument if there didn't exist numerous precedents for American law being applied to non-Americans for acts that didn't happen in America…

Robert said...

I just don't think one state's law can be invoked to prosecute an action taken in a different state, no matter how much they want to.

You've just had a Supreme Court decision that relied for precedent on a jurist who believed in spirits and witchcraft as a matter of legal fact. How much are you willing to bet that if push comes to shove the court won't find equally specious precedents to claim that in this case you can be prosecuted?

Larry Hart said...

locumranch:

As in the case of sex-withholding women who once promised men 'free-love' if they would support abortion-on-demand, only to withhold anyway, but who now threaten to withhold sex even harder from lovelorn men who no longer support abortion-on-demand.


You're not taking the rejection personally enough.


This is the very definition of INSANITY, this insistence to repeat the same failed policies over & over and expect a different result, all while rejecting the CRITICISM offered up by those few outspoken 'evil critics' who know that criticism is the only known antidote for error.


Failed policies like supply side economics, or prohibition, or fascism? You don't seem to have a problem with the insane people who keep trying those policies over and over again and expect them to work this time.


You know the 'evil critics' I'm talking about, don't you? Critics like Cesar, BurgerBoy & myself. You know, the ones who don't wish to engage in insanity HARDER while expecting a different outcome?


I'm sure Dr Brin will point this out, but isn't your entire history here an example of "doing the same thing and expecting a different outcome?"

Larry Hart said...

Robert:

You've just had a Supreme Court decision that relied for precedent on a jurist who believed in spirits and witchcraft as a matter of legal fact. How much are you willing to bet that if push comes to shove the court won't find equally specious precedents to claim that in this case you can be prosecuted?


I don't doubt it would be tried. But you're presuming that only one side is fighting this battle.

Cari Burstein said...

On the topic of birth control failing, just a couple of examples:

- Did you know the birth control pill's effectiveness is significantly reduced by being on antibiotics? Neither did I for about 20 years while taking it- not a single doctor or other source gave me this information. Luckily I never got pregnant. The way I found out about this initially was by chatting with a friend in an online game I played, where I discovered both of her children were born as a result of being on the pill and taking antibiotics.

- Someone in my family conceived all 3 of her children while on various forms of birth control.

I'll also note that a lot of the people who say abortion shouldn't be legal because people should have used birth control are the same ones who tend to try to get rid of proper sex education in schools, make it more difficult to access birth control, and do everything in their power to make it harder to get the information needed to prevent unwanted pregnancy. The overlap between the people trying to make sure everyone has education and access to birth control and those who are trying to make abortion illegal is vanishingly small.

Another thing some people really don't get about this is that it won't just affect people who are trying to get abortions- it'll affect the quality of medical care delivered to pregnant people whether they want an abortion or not. The ambiguity of what qualifies as legal intervention will make it far more likely that people will not get proper care after miscarriage (or might even be charged for abortion when they miscarry) or might not be able to get proper cancer treatment if they are pregnant during a cancer that might harm the baby (or the pregnancy might mean the cancer would be more likely to kill the mother). There are plenty of examples already of problems with how Catholic hospitals or places like Alabama are already delivering substandard care when a pregnancy is involved due to either legal worries or religious priorities. The high profile case in Ireland that led to abortion being legalized there is just the kind of thing we'll see more of here.

I'm very thankful I live in a state where abortion is still legal (at least for now), and old enough that the chances that I will even get pregnant are fairly low. But I worry about everyone else who deserves the right to decide whether a parasite gets to invade their body for 9 months.

I'll have more sympathy for the anti-choice movement when we get external wombs we can move a fetus to gestate. As long as the only option for gestation is a woman's body, she should have eviction rights.

Alan Brooks said...

Locum,
I’m not aware of denying protection to others; however if you write full details on such denial of protection, will pay attention and rectify the callousness.
The devil is in the details.

David Brin said...

Mr. Santos. While I agree that much of the far left is too frantic, hence ignoring the fact that abortion is inherently sad and viscerally disgusting... you ignore that most liberals go along with H Clinton's goal that it should be "safe, legal and rare."

In fact, liberal states have LOWER rates of abortion because detailed sex education and proper contraception help etc lead to FEWER abortions. Alas, instead of deciding to pragmatically adapt to those facts and do what's necessary, to reduce abortion numbers and rates, the mad right decided on moral purism... allowing even one, under any circumstance, is immoral sanctioning of baby-killing."

They must. Bearded/beaded sociality hippie Jesus would agree with nearly all liberal policies, so they needed an on-off switch to force him to hold his nose and side with prejudiced, anti-semite, anti-poor, gambling addicts, haters, worshippers of mammon and waves of abusive GOP perverts. An on-off switch of baby-killing.

The Creator did not make a binary world with clear moral on-off points. Ambiguity and analog dials are the rule and we must navigate in a series of optimizations, often with unpleasant compromises. In this case, the optimization is to make sure every baby is wanted. The effects have been overwhelmingly positive on the resulting birthed humans. Perhaps our descendants will rule we were barbarians. I am busy trying to make sure we have descendants.

--

Locum went back to masturbatory ravings, like a guy opening his trench coat on the D train shouting "Look at all MY traumas! Look! Hey! You're not looking!"

No, sigh, we're not. Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Larry Hart said...

One of these things is not like the other:

locumranch:

As in the case of today's G7 which has concluded that the dysfunctional, poorly conceived & counterproductive sanctions against Russia should work (nay, WILL WORK) but only if they are redoubled and redoubled again, leading our glorious leaders to conclude that the Russian Oil boycott will suddenly work if they boycott harder.



https://www.nytimes.com/live/2022/06/27/business/economy-news-inflation-stocks

Russia missed a deadline for making bond payments on Sunday, a move signaling its first default on international debt in more than a century, after Western sanctions thwarted the government’s efforts to pay foreign investors. The lapse adds to efforts to seal Moscow off from global capital markets for years.

smitpa said...

How long do you think taking a woman over state lines will be legal?

Larry Hart said...

Dr Brin:

The Creator did not make a binary world with clear moral on-off points.


If we take natural miscarriages and eggs which simply don't implant into account, God kills more unborn babies than all medical abortions in history. Whatever makes the religious right think that God is "pro-life" in the sense of wanting every conceived baby to survive to adulthood. It is only in our age of modern medicine that we take for granted the fact that a pregnancy will most likely lead to a healthy baby born to a living mother. For all we know, by causing a higher percentage of pregnancies to end non-tragically, we might just as well be thwarting God's will as doing His work.

I mean, if God is pro-life, then it's suspiciously peculiar that every living thing dies.

Alfred Differ said...

Der Oger,

Starting a vendetta-style cycle of arrests and prosecutions between states?

One small thing that makes it worse.

In most places over here it is not unlawful to resist false arrest by using force.
Some places require limits regarding excessive force, but some are 'stand your ground' states.

Much of this conflict you imagine happening won't make it into a courtroom. It would be the Fugitive Slave Act all over again except it will be about women.



I suspect we won't have a lot of bullets flying, though. More likely ad hoc groups would form and burn the locations of others. THAT'S what would most likely lead to prosecutions across state lines.

Alfred Differ said...

Larry,

I mean, if God is pro-life, then it's suspiciously peculiar that every living thing dies.

Heh. Well… No doubt you'll be extracting tongue from cheek any moment now.


The thing is… if we take the 'use your gifts' argument fully, we SHOULD be reducing unwanted and unintended pregnancies to ensure the remaining ones are more likely to be loved. To some that makes it sound like we are playing God… and they aren't wrong. We are. When you use the 'gifts given you' that's exactly what we do by not being sheep in the field.




But let's stick to tongue in cheek and ask a simpler question. Can we really thwart God? Seriously? He's supposed to be omniscient and omnipotent. No?

We can't really thwart him. What we can do is disobey. So… which of us is more disobedient? The woman terminating a pregnancy or others refusing to let her use her gifts (intelligence, love, etc) to direct her life?


[As usual, I'm not arguing against you. I'm mostly amused at the logical holes in non-scholarly religious thinking. Properly trained theologians won't make the arguments you put up, but they aren't the ones in control of this counter-reformation.]

Larry Hart said...

Alfred Differ:

It would be the Fugitive Slave Act all over again except it will be about women.


If the Republicans manage to pass federal laws outlawing aiding and abetting abortions, then yes. Until then, there's no reason the Illinois authorities would back up ruffians from Missouri trying to arrest or kidnap Illinois residents in Illinois for activities which took place in Illinois. Blue staters would be free to offer resistance.

Tim H. said...

It seems some of the anti-choice crowd take a more positive approach:

https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2022/06/anti-abortion-movement-dobbs-roe-overturned/661393/

Mostly, they accentuate the negative, so I feel justified in thinking that for evangelicals, it's just the dead cat thrown on the table to distract attention away from their racist congregations.

Larry Hart said...

Alfred Differ:

Heh. Well… No doubt you'll be extracting tongue from cheek any moment now.


I forget exactly which year, but it must have been a decade or so ago, someone was pushing the slogan, "God is pro-life!" It was in response to that that my thoughts went to the question of whether that seemed to be the case, no matter how nice it sounds. Nature in general and even human reproduction in particular, if looked at without rose colored glasses, would seem to indicate otherwise.

My daughter was about 10 at the time, and after that year's July 4 parade, she was eating ice cream and spontaneously announced that, "Life is good." She further clarified that what she meant was "Life tastes good." Out of the mouths of babes, that became my counter mantra to "God is pro-life." "Life tastes good."


But let's stick to tongue in cheek and ask a simpler question. Can we really thwart God? Seriously? He's supposed to be omniscient and omnipotent. No?


You're singing my song.


We can't really thwart him. What we can do is disobey.


I think true monotheists would say that the point of free will is not what we do, but what we choose to have loyalty to. Dave Sim trying to be on "God's team." Now, they'll hedge that by arguing that unless you choose actions A, B, or X, you probably don't really demonstrate loyalty to God. But the actions are less important than the choice to be loyal.


So… which of us is more disobedient? The woman terminating a pregnancy or others refusing to let her use her gifts (intelligence, love, etc) to direct her life?


I find it difficult to argue that God is pleased with the killing of babies, so I tend to focus on the other aspects of abortion. First and foremost, whether rape justifies consigning a woman to slavery as an ambulatory incubator. Separately, there's the issue of problems like ectopic pregnancies, detached placentas, and I'm sure horrors I've never heard of, in which a live birth just isn't going to happen. Denying those women a medical procedure to save their life or health is inhumanly cruel.


[As usual, I'm not arguing against you. I'm mostly amused at the logical holes in non-scholarly religious thinking. Properly trained theologians won't make the arguments you put up, but they aren't the ones in control of this counter-reformation.]


To each their own, but to me, "properly trained theologians" rate close to "properly trained astrologers." I won't bother them if they don't bother me, but they don't determine my decisions.

Larry Hart said...

Tim H:

Mostly, they accentuate the negative, so I feel justified in thinking that for evangelicals, it's just the dead cat thrown on the table to distract attention away from their racist congregations.


The couple portrayed in the article you posted sound sincere to me, but their hope that the mainstream of the anti-choice movement follows suit seems to exhibit a Susan Collins-esque level of willful naivete.

Larry Hart said...

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot curses Clarence Thomas...

https://wgntv.com/news/roe-v-wade-overturned/f-clarence-thomas-lightfoot-calls-out-scotus-at-pride-event/

CHICAGO — A profanity-laced comment made over the weekend by Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot at the expense of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, garnered mixed reactions across the city.

Lightfoot took aim at SCOTUS over last week’s abortion ruling at a Pride Event over the weekend.

“(Expletive) Clarence Thomas,” Lightfoot shouted.


But Republicans think that public officials have a duty to moderate the tone, not to be inflammatory. Because, y'know, their politicians are so mild mannered. Pardon me for feeling that they can go fuck themselves.


Critics say while those in the crowd may have welcomed the mayor’s obscenities, the comments could impact her reelection campaign because those in office have a duty to temper emotions rather than encourage them.

“I think the mayor’s action was very irresponsible,” said Steve Boulton, chairman of the Chicago Republican Party, reacting Monday to Lightfoot’s comments.
...
Boulton says as a leader in a city of close to three million people, Lightfoot should be held to a higher standard, as there is a similar onus for anyone in office.

“We saw state Senator Sarah Feigenholtz post on Facebook a cartoon of a papal figure holding a gun to the head of the Statue of Liberty,” Boulton said. “If our leaders don’t try to calm violence, instead of encouraging it, we are going to have a lot of violence in this country.”


Uhhhh...January 6? RINO hunting? Kyle Rittenhouse? But Democrats are the ones who need to be trying to calm violence instead of encouraging it?

Words fail me.

Alfred Differ said...

Tim H,

I'd applaud the couple in the article for acting directly. That's the way this should be working since we do not have broad consensus. Let people help. Keep government out of it.

I'd add one qualification. If they can come to California, our folks should be able to fly to Indiana (or elsewhere) to assist people in their choices. Any State making that illegal is getting involved when we do not have broad consensus.

Larry,

My usual retort to "God is pro-life" is "No one gets out of it alive." He's not pro-life and a student of Scripture would know that.

I'm with you when comparing them to astrologers, but for one exception I make. I'll offer a moderate kind of respect to people who actually study their faith. It's the willfully ignorant fools who rationalize a quote to mean what they need it to mean at the time that invoke visions of Orwell in my head.

Most people don't know it, but Astrology has quite a lot of depth to BE studied. So, I put it in the same camp. It's still BS, but point to any ideas invented by humans which have a chance to be judged by all future generations as non-BS and I'll just laugh. The nicest thing they'll say if you travel far enough forward in time is "Well... that was an improvement at least."

David Brin said...

At every level and in all ways, Vladimir Putin showed us why despotisms fail against the West... because like all despots who despised the Enlightenment Experiment, he crafted a set of masturbatory, zero-sum rationalizations for why Democracies are inherently weak and decadent and cowardly. They always do this. They must, lest it be plain that we BOTH get our freedoms/science/creativity/wealth/fun AND are capable of every martial virtue.

It's right there in the derisive lyrics to Yankee Doodle that redcoats chanted, till Monmouth and Cowpens and Yorktown. And that Johnny Rebs sneered till Gettysburg and Appomattox. And in Nazi then Soviet propaganda and (worse) their internal planning docs.

Putin cannot even consider he might be wrong, even after his actions caused NATO to coalesce, solidify and grow, showing rising determination every day, he still must double down, insisting that his NEXT travesty (e.g. firing missiles directly at a civilian shopping mall filled with thousands) will make the decadent weakling westerners back down.

He will never admit what's happening. Every crime proves to us that our children will not be safe while he is around. Retired generals in the RF and others need to consider where this goes. And so do leaders of the Rising Power to the south, who nurse exactly the same incantation spells.


https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/getting-ready-starve-world-bbc-outlines-how-putins-mafia-beckwith?lipi=urn%3Ali%3Apage%3Ad_flagship3_feed%3B9KVbHVnLS0CNxBNDyQqV8w%3D%3D

and
https://www.linkedin.com/feed/update/urn:li:activity:6947384911376916480/?lipi=urn%3Ali%3Apage%3Ad_flagship3_feed%3B9KVbHVnLS0CNxBNDyQqV8w%3D%3D

Jon S. said...

"I find it difficult to argue that God is pleased with the killing of babies..."

The prophet Jeremiah would appear to disagree with you. Psalm 137, verses 7-9:

Remember, Lord, what the Edomites did
on the day Jerusalem fell.
“Tear it down,” they cried,
“tear it down to its foundations!”

Daughter Babylon, doomed to destruction,
happy is the one who repays you
according to what you have done to us.

Happy is the one who seizes your infants
and dashes them against the rocks.

DP said...

Eliminating privacy, reducing women to the status of service animals, erasing the line between church and state - all in a day's work for the SC.

But you ain't seen nothing yet. With West Virginia v USEPA the SC can eliminate the EPA's power to regulate (and call into question the entire basis of government).

https://fortune.com/2022/06/27/supreme-court-epa-ruling-ramifications-2022/

And what perfect timing.

https://kmarson.com/2022/06/27/americans-are-pissed/

Extreme weather events are occurring on an almost daily basis, whether it be rising temperatures, fires, tornados, hurricanes, or floods. I’m glad we didn’t plan a trip to Yellowstone this summer because a large portion of it will remain closed. Oceans are heating up and deserts are dying. Ghost trees line up and down along the East Coast. Ocean conveyor belts are shutting down, and seas are heating up and acidifying. Marine life gobbles up microplastics like they are candy. Ice sheets are melting and oceans are rising. Soon, all coastal cities will be threatened with flooding and there won’t be enough FEMA or insurance money to go around. America is losing its trees to fires and the world is collectively losing its lungs to Amazon deforestation. Biodiversity is declining across the board, and soon there will be no bugs left for birds to eat. The ozone layer keeps depleting, but our government does little to keep pollution at bay — especially if the power of the EPA will be limited. Topsoil is eroding, bees are dying, and aridification is drying the planet out. Monoculture upsets the natural balance of soils, genetically modified foods are risky, and farm animals are loaded with antibiotics. Worldwide, famines are becoming more frequent and cities are running out of drinking water. Fracking contaminates aquifers and oil spills damage the ecosystem. Air pollution, acid rain, urban sprawl, and overpopulation are just a few modern day problems. Unrecycled plastics overflow waste dumps and we breathe their particulates into our lungs. Cryptocurrency mining uses huge amounts of power, and that power is getting harder and more expensive to create.

The clock is ticking ever faster toward the day when a huge portion of this country will officially run out of water. We pretend that the inevitable will never happen, but doing so fools no one but ourselves. Lake Mead is nearing dead pool status which translates to a massive loss of power. Speaking of power, the country’s largest nuclear plant needs lots of water to keep it running, and that facility is located in a desert. Unfortunately, that same desert allocates much of its water to farms leased to Saudi Arabia. All across the country, rivers are drying up, reservoirs are evaporating, and salt water is contaminating the drinking water supply. Soon, water will be worth more than its weight in gold.

So you government haters will get what you've always wanted - to be free of those nosey meddlesome federal regulations.

You will also get poisoned water, carcinogenic soil and contaminated air.

Bon appetite.

Your grandchildren will live in a crap sack world, and they will curse your memory for it.

Tony Fisk said...

It may be coincidence, but the amount of the loan repayments Russia just defaulted on is roughly equivalent to the cost of the missiles they've been lobbing in the latest hissy fit.
Maybe the Lannistersky's do pay their debts...

Roughly 2% of all pregnancies are ectopic. Many of these result in a miscarriage. Untreated, those that don't result in death of the mother. The treatment is now illegal.

Anyone for suggesting a half dozen of theirhonours should be charged with conspiracy to commit mass murder?

Robert said...

I'm mostly amused at the logical holes in non-scholarly religious thinking. Properly trained theologians won't make the arguments you put up, but they aren't the ones in control of this counter-reformation.

By that criteria, every Baptist pastor I've met hasn't been a properly trained theologian. Non of them could handle logic — they already knew the correct answer with a ready-to-hand collection of biblical quotes to justify it. Trying to apply logic was 'arguing with god' and the quotes meant no further discussion was warranted.

Not enough experience to know how widespread this behaviour is.

scidata said...

The in-fighting between denominations was distressing to me in my youth. "A Methodist is a Baptist who can read" and such. Funny, but not nice or kind, which I thought was the point of the Christianity. In that sense, I admit to being a Pollyanna.

len said...

"He does make a good point about the counterproductive effects of "demonizing non-college whites", but he appears to be unable to restrain himself as he dismisses them as uneducated morons who are (1) stupid, (2) emotional, (3) easily manipulated and (4) cartoonishly masculine."

I notice you're not actually saying he's wrong. The best argument you have is not that the caricature is false, but that not everyone who votes for Republicans resembles the way the right-wing media, talking heads, and politicians portray themselves.

"Most assuredly, those foolish white deplorables will never ever consider murdering you in your comfy beds once they conclude that you all are manipulative, deceptive & hate-filled."

I hope they try.

Larry Hart said...

Paul Krugman speaks truth:

https://www.nytimes.com/2022/06/27/opinion/republicans-extreme-abortion.html

And because G.O.P. extremism is fed by resentment against the very things that, as I see it, truly make America great — our diversity, our tolerance for difference — it cannot be appeased or compromised with. It can only be defeated.

Howard Brazee said...

Republicans do vary. But when the party and winning are more important than the issues, does it matter that a libertarian takes away personal rights?

Robert said...

The in-fighting between denominations was distressing to me in my youth. "A Methodist is a Baptist who can read" and such.

"Before I became a Christian" — phrase used by many Baptists to describe their life as Catholics or other denominations…

I find it interesting that evangelicals have appropriated the term "christian" as applying only to themselves. Maybe not all, but certainly all I have met that made it known they were evangelicals.

Larry Hart said...

Robert:

"Before I became a Christian" — phrase used by many Baptists to describe their life as Catholics or other denominations…


They do love their wordplay. When I was in college in the 80s, a guy who everyone knew was a Christian activist advertised a lecture titles, "Why I'm not a Christian". He spent the talk defending Christianity until he got to the punch line foreshadowed by the title.

"I'm not a Christian because my parents made me go to church."

"I'm not a Christian because my culture expects it of me."

That sort of clever legerdemain.


I find it interesting that evangelicals have appropriated the term "christian" as applying only to themselves. Maybe not all, but certainly all I have met that made it known they were evangelicals.


Again from my college days, one of the quad preachers explicitly asserted that "Only born-again Christians are going to heaven." Catholics, he said, were going to hell, but so were Episcopalians and Methodists.

Actually, if hell is the place where everyone but born-again Christians go, I look forward to being free of their company for the first time ever.

scidata said...

We learned the defensive come-backs early. Whenever another kid attacked me with "Prezb'terians are all going to hell.", I'd reply "Of course, that's where we're most needed."

Larry Hart said...

scidata:

Whenever another kid attacked me with "Prezb'terians are all going to hell."


I don't think today's punks could be even that articulate.

Paradoctor said...

Means and End Times
an Underfable

Once upon a time, a dark Angel told a Fundamentalist, “The End Times are nearly upon us; for if only one more sin, even a small one, be committed, then the King of Kings will return in glory and fury. Armageddon will rage, the world will be destroyed, the righteous will go to Heaven, and the wicked will go to Hell.”

The Fundamentalist said, “Why are you telling me this?”

The dark Angel said, “Because here is one small sin that you yourself can commit right now, and thus bring on the End Times. Hurry, for soon one of the forty-two hidden saints will redeem two sins.”

The Fundamentalist said, “But if I commit a sin, then won’t I go to Hell?”

The dark Angel said, “Yes, but the rest of the righteous will go to Heaven. Is that not a worthy sacrifice? The end justifies the means!”

The Fundamentalist thought this over for awhile, and then committed the small sin. But the dark Angel said, “You hesitated too long; the hidden saint acted, and two sins are forgiven, including yours. Now you must commit two more sins, somewhat worse, to bring on the End Times.”

The Fundamentalist did so, and failed again; and then committed four sins that were even worse; and then eight, and then sixteen. This geometric progression continued, until the Fundamentalist did nothing but evil deeds, all day long.

Moral: Means become ends in themselves.

Larry Hart said...

Paradoctor:

Moral: Means become ends in themselves.


Not all that long ago right here, there was reference to the scene in C.S. Lewis's Out of the Silent Planet in which the villain, Weston, argues for humans forcibly replacing the inhabitants of Mars and other planets in order to fulfil our manifest destiny in the universe. The Oyarsa of Mars argues back that in order to expand throughout the universe, mankind would have to so radically alter its physiognomy that there would be no difference between man and those aliens he is replacing. He concludes that the only characteristic of mankind that the "humanist" Weston is interested in preserving is the seed itself--that they be descended from the loins of earth humans.

That's almost an exact analogy for Republicans who are perfectly fine with undermining democracy, human rights, small government, business, civility, etc. as long as doing so helps them win. What's the point of winning if you have to become the opposite of what you are in order to do so? Ultimately, like Weston, all that is important is the seed--the "-R" after the winner's name.

Larry Hart said...

Anyone read the dissent in the Dobbs case (beginning around page 148 of the linked document)? Wow, Breyer, Sotomayor, and Kagan pull no punches:

https://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/21pdf/19-1392_6j37.pdf

We believe in a Constitution that puts some issues off limits to majority rule. Even in the face of public opposition, we uphold the right of individuals—yes, including women—to make their own choices and chart their own futures. Or at least, we did once.

Alan Brooks said...

Flavor of the month: one month they’ll say controlling the border is what is most important. Now it’s abortion. At one time it was flag-burning. Sixty years ago it was prayer in public schools.
They’re rebels without a cause.

A.F. Rey said...

As in the case of sex-withholding women who once promised men 'free-love' if they would support abortion-on-demand, only to withhold anyway, but who now threaten to withhold sex even harder from lovelorn men who no longer support abortion-on-demand.

I know this old, but it is so outrageous that I have to mention it again.

Women do not "withhold" sex from anyone. They give it to those they deem worthy.

Only the most unworthy feel that women are "withholding" it from them. These proto-rapists think women owe them something. BREAKING NEWS: they don't. No one does. And anyone who believes that they are owed something certainly deserves not getting it.

I don't know if you personally believe this B.S., locum, but dissuade yourself of the idea. It is the product of some sick imaginations. One which leads to despicable behaviors. So don't use it in an argument or for persuasion. Because only sick individuals would be persuaded. Everyone else just want to throw up on it.

And on you if you buy into that garbage.

Robert said...

What's the point of winning if you have to become the opposite of what you are in order to do so?

You are assuming that they are actually in favour of those principles, rather than simply wanting to remain top (or at least not bottom) dogs.

I would argue that many of them, especially the younger crowd like Boebert, Gaetz, MTG et al never cared about anything except power and control.

David Brin said...

Did that 'len' just threaten us?

Alan Brooks said...

Today’s politics are not as unfathomable as they might appear to be. Millions do believe that the world must end for a New Heaven and Earth to be created.
Can’t reason with them, so just talk about the weather and say ‘bye!

Larry Hart said...

Dr Brin:

Did that 'len' just threaten us?


No, read it again.

He quoted locumranch and then answered with bluster.

Larry Hart said...

A.F. Rey:

Women do not "withhold" sex from anyone.


Ok, be fair. Sometimes, they do. :)


They give it to those they deem worthy.


Guys who complain that they can't get laid usually mean that they can't find sex with a woman way above their metaphorical price range. Shorn of rose-colored romantic notions, sex is analogous to an economic transaction. If you're experiencing a shortage, you're asking too much or offering too little.

Also--outside my personal experience, but--I've heard complaints that today's young men expect sex to resemble porn. Life isn't like that.


Only the most unworthy feel that women are "withholding" it from them. These proto-rapists think women owe them something. BREAKING NEWS: they don't. No one does.


Conservatives who like to lecture poor people that the world doesn't owe them anything sure turn into snowflakes over what the world owes them.

Jon S. said...

"Also--outside my personal experience, but--I've heard complaints that today's young men expect sex to resemble porn. Life isn't like that."

It's not? Nobody tell my wife, please. ;-)

scidata said...

Voyager 1
Currently at 156 AU from Earth (approaching 22 light-hours). Science data and command responses are normal. Attitude Control System is working (else we couldn't communicate with it). However, the ACS is sending back invalid data, sometimes described as 'random data'. Sounds like the opening scene of a SETI movie or book. I've looked around for the data download, but no luck yet. I'd like to play with it to look for patterns (I've been listening to the CRYPTONOMICRON audiobook).

Alfred Differ said...

I've heard complaints that today's young men expect sex to resemble porn. Life isn't like that.

Maybe in Nevada. Certain counties in Nevada. 8)

locumranch said...


AFRey, AlanB and LarryH are all correct; I agree.

Women do not owe men anything; men do not owe women anything; no individual or group owes any special rights, privileges, protections or abortions to any other individual or group; and the new social contract is no social contract at all.

The devil is in the details, as Alan says, so it's important to realize that the groups and individuals which you identify as a potential threat to you & yours are similarly entitled to identify you & yours as a potential threat and respond in kind, including the implementation of all the defensive steps & preemptive ploys that you attempt.

This is your brave new liberal world, one without roles, traditions, rituals or obligations, where no race, religion, gender or identity group owes any other even common courtesy.

Len invokes this world when he says "I hope they try", perhaps in the mistaken belief that he shares in the legal & moral protections that he would deny others on the basis of his idiosyncratic threat assessment.

The thing I can't get my mind around is the WEIRD assumption that a (non-college) lack of formal education indicates 'stoopidity' and/or moral weakness, especially when the university level education is an incredibly recent social development that the so-called 'Greatest Generation' (and all who preceded them) lacked.

That those lacking in formal education are necessarily deficient in intelligence, morality, sentience or sapience, this is an absurd assertion.


Best

Alfred Differ said...

Women do not owe men anything; men do not owe women anything; no individual or group owes any special rights, privileges, protections or abortions to any other individual or group; and the new social contract is no social contract at all.

Demonstrating you don't get what they're saying. Taking it to extremes like this displays an inability to grasp subtlety.

We CAN disagree on what we all owe each other, but very few walk through life without some form of expectation of others matched by a willingness to meet their expectations. Those rules are usually unwritten and underlie the social groups to which we remain loyal.

George Carty said...

Back in 2017 the Georgist who goes by the Twitter alias of @ObligationValue explained the blue-red split is chiefly about economic pricing power. I'll reproduce his thread here:

* The biggest blind spot of the Democratic Party is that even amongst the anti-monopoly segment of the party, most Democrats don’t seem to understand the significance of the monopoly problem.
* There are two ways to make money. Positive-sum and zero-sum games. In business, the former invest heavily, have a lot of competition and are light on profits. The latter invest lightly, have high barriers-to-entry and huge profits.
* For stock investors, the former is the plague. Nobody wants capex - even if it helps the aggregate economy. Instead, investors like Buffett want the latter. Big barriers-to-entry so capex is light and profits big.
* But this thread is about politics, not stocks. If we observe these two types of firms, where are they located? A large percentage of the huge monopolistic firms are in the US blue state urban cores (and a few other global cities) where the liberals live.
* What about the narrow margin firms that operate in competitive markets and don’t make much money? They are more concentrated in the red state periphery where the Republicans live. These firms don’t have monopolies. They compete against the low land prices in Asia. Tough break.
* Monopolies exploit pricing power in many ways, but let’s look at Google. Customers don’t pay, but if you are a product firm and want to advertise online, FB & Google are the only game in town. So product firms are stuck paying big. Google’s margin is someone else’s obligation.
* So how does this play out over time? The market power of the urban monopolies steadily shifts incomes away from the periphery. Smart people from the periphery leave their hometowns for the urban core, making the problem worse. The periphery culture deteriorates.
* The high income urbanites, flush with monopoly spoils, observe the cultural deterioration of the periphery and wonder why they are so backward. Increasingly, these vile creatures of the periphery start acting less like humans, and more like animals.
* So the key problem with the Democratic Party is that most of them don’t understand that the racist mouth-breather in the hills of West Virginia isn’t the bad guy in this story. He’s the prey. He might say a lot of dumb shit, but good people don’t pick on the weak.
* The bad guys in this tale are the monopolistic firms funneling incomes to the urban cores & landowners capturing those gains. Many of these people hide this nefarious activity behind a veil of social liberalism. How can they be bad when the W Virginia guy said a racist thing?
* I’m not saying fascism isn’t a real threat - it is. But the fascists are a consequence, not a cause. They're here notifying us we fucked up. We can’t stop the fascists by telling them to play nice while we keep extracting monopoly rents.
* We have to stop the fascists by looking at ourselves in the mirror, and understanding that we are the enemy.

duncan cairncross said...

George Carly is 100% correct

The problem is that from 1945 to the 1970's the additional wealth from improved productivity was shared with the workers (who were responsible for part of it)
Since then the executives and the "owners" (who did NOT contribute anything) have snaffled the lot

Up until the 70's the USA was the best place to be a working man

Then as the USA "stalled" the other nations started to overtake

THIS is what Marx warned would happen - and what the "New Deal" prevented before it was dismantled

Dwight Williams said...

And what the New Deal was damned for preventing by the "proprietary" class.

A.F. Rey said...

Women do not owe men anything; men do not owe women anything; no individual or group owes any special rights, privileges, protections or abortions to any other individual or group; and the new social contract is no social contract at all.

------------------------------------------------------

Demonstrating you don't get what they're saying. Taking it to extremes like this displays an inability to grasp subtlety.

We CAN disagree on what we all owe each other, but very few walk through life without some form of expectation of others matched by a willingness to meet their expectations. Those rules are usually unwritten and underlie the social groups to which we remain loyal.


And these expectations guts the arguments of anti-abortionists.

Because if there is some expectation, that implies an obligation by the person to meet that expectation, whether the person really wants to or not. Which means that the expectation is not always 100% the choice of that person. They may feel coerced, even if only slightly, by the fear of losing what they expect in return. This loss can be seen as a punishment, or even a threat.

And if a person is obligated to do something, she is not 100% responsible for the expectation. Which means she is not 100% responsible for the outcome, either.

Those "lovelorn" men that locum mentioned certainly have an expectation of women to, eh, "put out." As do some husbands toward their wives (and, to be fair, some wives toward their husbands). As do some boyfriends toward their girlfriends.

And once the woman is not 100% responsible for having sex, then she is also not 100% responsible for getting pregnant. How much depends on circumstances, the social conventions, etc. But it is most often there, and hard to distinguish when it is not.

And if the woman is not 100% responsible for having sex, how can you force her to continue to have a condition that has the non-trivial potential of permanently injuring her or even killing her? Even if this condition results the in birth of another life?

We don't force people to give up lungs, or kidneys, or even bone marrow, to save another person's life. But anti-abortionists have no qualms about forcing a mother to take a chance with their health or life for another.

Larry Hart said...

A.F. Rey:

We don't force people to give up lungs, or kidneys, or even bone marrow, to save another person's life. But anti-abortionists have no qualms about forcing a mother to take a chance with their health or life for another.


In a rational country, that would be the slam dunk argument. The Supreme Court (it would remain capitalized in that alternate universe) would decide that 9-0. Even if a fetus is declared to be a person, the reasoning still stands.

As to the rest of the locumranch spew you're responding to, he seems to assert that our proposition that women (as a collectinve) don't owe sex to men (as a collective) logically implies that whites (as a collective) don't owe blacks (as a collective) the courtesy of not killing them.

Also, while I'm here...no one here on the Enlightenment side is calling people "stoopid" based on their level of formal education. The epithet is reserved for those who make their inane beliefs known, such as "Vaccines make you magnetic" or "Hillary eats babies" or "Joe Biden lies more than any president in history* ".

* Or even in years beginning with 202

Tim H. said...

RE: "Means and end times" The notion of "Fundagelicals" indulging in situational ethics is deliciously ironic, good work, Paradoctor.

Larry Hart said...

George Carty:

* So how does this play out over time? The market power of the urban monopolies steadily shifts incomes away from the periphery. Smart people from the periphery leave their hometowns for the urban core, making the problem worse. The periphery culture deteriorates.


It's worth pointing out that while those like locumranch blame urban liberals for that situation, the liberals and the corporatists are two distinct cohorts. The ones who are excoriated for being too "woke", or for hovering over their precious children, or for tolerating abnormal personal behaviors are not the ones transferring wealth from the rural areas to themselves. They just happen to live in the same places for vastly different reasons.

Rural conservatives have been voting Republican for decades now, usually because of capitalism vs socialism. And Republicans are not the solution to the economic problem described in the article--they are the problem.

David Brin said...

Quickies.

1. The central aregument by the Supremes' liar-rightist wing is there in the final sentences. This should be decided politically, 'hence we return the matter to the peoples' representatives'... in other words state legislatures. And while I totally disagree... personal body sovereignty is embedded in the 14th and other Amendments... that core rationalization would at least be worth pondering, if it weren't for the pure fact that...

...the legislatures in almost all red states - apart Alaska, Utah and a couple of other exceptions - are utterly warped and cheat-gerrymandered, so that they bear almost no relationship to actual opinions of the state's citizens. Oh, Alabama would still be red if gerry went away. But the degree of Mad MAGA *radicalism* in the statehouse would be fantastically less. And Texas would flip.

2. GC while monopolies/duopolies and even triopolies are horrendous travestis, they also have many liberal employees and cutomers and hence they are not the ones funding Fox and the GOP. That is not about tech companies themselve, but rather about rich oligarchswho subsidize the Fox-Trumpist populism mania via direct cash to Fox (in ads) and the GOP (via Sheldon Adelson's Macao casinos and the Saudis and Russin oligarchs and our own silver spoon inheritance brats.

3. "That those lacking in formal education are necessarily deficient in intelligence, morality, sentience or sapience, this is an absurd assertion." No one said that, fellah. YOURS is the confederate cult that juvenilizes MAGAs and prods them to march against their own interests in service to their exploiters, parasites and class enemies... EXACTLY like a million poor while men marched in lackey service to plantation lords.

MY folk avidly compete to do PBS science and nature shows that share everything we know with avid amateurs.

Larry Hart said...

Dr Brin:

MY folk avidly compete to do PBS science and nature shows that share everything we know with avid amateurs.


To locumranch, "sharing everything you know" is both condescending and coercive.

Alan Brooks said...

Locum,
Pat Buchanan and his people have been saying what you write here, for decades. They write articles every week on ‘Main Street versus Wall Street’.
But such paleoconservatism only succeeds in a frugal 19th century environment. The 19th century, when a farmer would ride miles in a buggy to the general store.
A true paleo today would self-sufficiently live in a remote area; and possibly be bored to death. So naturally, there’s compromise, modernity is partaken of in a rural setting: electronic gadgets and high tech vehicles.
Houses of worship do put some minds at ease—however, Man cannot live by church alone. He wants that which is very modern as well.

locumranch said...


Alfred suggests that my arguments lack 'subtlety', yet the various responses suggest that my argument doesn't lack subtlety enough, so I will be direct & blunt:.

Any attempt to modify & amend the social contract requires negotiation, compromise and unanimous agreement.

Larry & Matthew demand the right to 'punch Nazis' but, in a way that demonstrates either extreme entitlement or cowardice, Larry & Matthew also wish to deny the Nazis the right to reciprocate & punch back.

Society cannot afford to grant this type of unilateral & non-reciprocal right to anyone, not without first obtaining unanimous agreement from all involved parties, as this would void the entire social contract and potentially lead to social dissolution, which is where we are now in the EU & US.

The so-called 'Right to Abortion', being of exclusive benefit to a specific subset of pregnant women, is yet another unilateral & non-reciprocal right which offers very little benefit to most other identity groups.

That said, I'm OK with this type of unilateral & non-reciprocal amendments, assuming that you are willing to negotiate and offer certain compensatory rights, privileges and concessions to me & mine.

You can start by kissing my ring.


Best

Alan Brooks said...

O’Sullivan’s Law indicates that the Right does not wish to compromise.

Tim H. said...

Locumranch, what part of freedom of choice are you not grasping?

Alan Brooks said...

Locum idealizes the rural. My experience with farmers and ranchers is that they have strict hierarchies as well. Doesn’t matter how hard one worked, they wanted people around who ‘live modern’.
If one rode a bicycle, they were looked down upon, as they didn’t “live modern”. The Village Fathers were not infrequently cynical about the religious, considering them simpletons who weren’t modern enough for their tastes—even though the religious did live modern. They were tolerated but not respected.
——
‘Course, it depends exactly Where in the rural we are discussing.

matthew said...

I'll punch Nazis if it is legal or illegal.
Not punching Nazis (or oligarchs, or misogynists, or christofascist bigots) is the root of our current fucked up world.
Every time a Nazi gets punched, the world gets closer to ideal.
Pain is a teacher.
Pain has taught me to punch Nazis. Because Nazis are *fully* interested in punching me, or someone I love.

Notice that our resident white-nationalist tree-folk dude has not posted once since Russia closed down its internet connection with the rest of the world?

Larry Hart said...

locumranch:

Nazis also wish to deny anyone else the right to reciprocate & punch back.


I fixed your spelling for you. You're welcome.


Larry & Matthew also wish to deny the Nazis the right to reciprocate & punch back.


No, Larry thinks that "punching first" is not the same thing as punching back, and that the Nazis are the ones who punched first. Your sense of cause and effect is astounding, because you seem to think that retaliation in self-defense fully justifies the initial violence that precipitated the response. But then, maybe "think" is the wrong verb.

matthew presumably can speak for himself.

Larry Hart said...

loc on a roll:

The so-called 'Right to Abortion', being of exclusive benefit to a specific subset of pregnant women, is yet another unilateral & non-reciprocal right which offers very little benefit to most other identity groups.


The right to bodily autonomy is of benefit to everybody. The right to gestate in another human being's womb regardless of consequence to that human being is the exclusive benefit to as specific subset. If fetal personhood reduces the woman carrying it to slavery as a walking life-support system, then you could be forced to donate a kidney or a lung if someone else's life depends on receiving your organs.

You claim to be a medical doctor, so you must then be disingenuously pretending not to understand the medical implications of pregnancy and that abortion is somehow about a desire to kill an infant. But then, the fact that you dissemble and outright lie is kind of a "Dog bites man" story at this point.

David Brin said...

Matthew, my father infiltrated the German-American Bund in the 1930s. He beat up Nazis with relish. Sometimes actual relish.

matthew said...

I like your father, Dr. Brin. We need more like him today.

Larry Hart said...

matthew:

Notice that our resident white-nationalist tree-folk dude has not posted once since Russia closed down its internet connection with the rest of the world?


I had noticed. Didn't say anything because...well, now you've probably invoked him.

David Brin said...

Is Tony around? Were any of the rest of you involved in the PBworkd site for tracking predictions, especially from EARTH? I just got this message:

"We noticed that you haven't used your workspace named: Earth by David Brin for over 11 months.
As you may have heard, we reclaim workspaces that have fallen into disuse (PBworks Spring Cleaning).

Reclaiming these idle workspaces frees up thousands of potentially useful URLs for people who will actually put them to use. We're planning to reclaim your workspace in 30 days. If you want to keep your workspace, click here. If you're not currently logged into your PBworks account, you'll be asked to log in. You'll know that your workspace has been removed from the deletion list once the warning message disappears.

If you're truly no longer using your workspace, simply do nothing, and in 30 days, we'll delete the unused workspace and reclaim its URL. Thanks,The PBworks Team

George Carty said...

Duncan Cairncross: The problem is that from 1945 to the 1970's the additional wealth from improved productivity was shared with the workers (who were responsible for part of it)
Since then the executives and the "owners" (who did NOT contribute anything) have snaffled the lot

Up until the 70's the USA was the best place to be a working man

Then as the USA "stalled" the other nations started to overtake


How much of the USA's post-WWII golden age was simply down to a relative lack of foreign competition (as the rest of the world was either still undeveloped or rebuilding from the war)? I suspect that (for example) the UAW's glory days happened because the Big 3 automakers functioned as a de facto cartel, with massive gross profits that could be redirected (via union militancy) to the workers. Those glory days ended with the coming of Japanese competition.

I'm not sure more generally that labour vs. capital (as opposed to labour vs. monopoly) is the most relevant frame to use when analysing the economy.

Larry Hart: It's worth pointing out that while those like locumranch blame urban liberals for that situation, the liberals and the corporatists are two distinct cohorts. The ones who are excoriated for being too "woke", or for hovering over their precious children, or for tolerating abnormal personal behaviors are not the ones transferring wealth from the rural areas to themselves. They just happen to live in the same places for vastly different reasons.

Rural conservatives have been voting Republican for decades now, usually because of capitalism vs socialism. And Republicans are not the solution to the economic problem described in the article--they are the problem.


Isn't it the case that the United States has two wealthy elites: a liberal elite based on intellectual property of various kinds, and a conservative elite based on real estate and natural resources (especially fossil fuels)? Both elites use culture-war posturing (woke for the former, anti-woke for the latter) to deflect the attention of those who would otherwise focus on their economic privileges.

duncan cairncross said...

Dr Brin

With the US Supreme Court finding that a "Right to Privacy" does not exist would this be a good time to work on removing all of "Privacy" that at present protects ill gotten wealth and income

Alfred Differ said...

duncan,

Of course not. It's our right to privacy that collapses. Not theirs. 8)

Alfred Differ said...

locumranch,

Any attempt to modify & amend the social contract requires negotiation, compromise and unanimous agreement.

No. Takes about 90% to bring in a new change. You can hold onto a social law if support dips below 90% but will likely lose it at about 80%. The problem is that dissenters can too easily hide from consequences if you don't have a very high consensus. Unanimity is a pipe dream, though. Never happens.

Society can't afford…

Heh. Look who's speaking for everyone. That's usually the job of a progressive. Congrats.

The so-called 'Right to Abortion', being of exclusive benefit to a specific subset of pregnant women…

Oh hardly. I benefit from women being free to direct their lives and I sure as hell can't get pregnant.

This raises the question Hayek asked in one of his early books after he pivoted away from economics. WHY do we protect the liberty of others? Paraphrased version... What's in it for us?

------

As for kissing rings, I usually counter-offer by suggesting they kiss my ass. Then I smirk and offer to buy the next round. After a few beers, I like to play darts. I'm impressively good at getting them to go anywhere but toward the wall with the board. Seriously. Floor, ceiling, and barstools.

Alfred Differ said...

George Carty,

Isn't it the case that the United States has two wealthy elites...

I think that is an oversimplification. If you want to subdivide the clade and look for coherent sub-clades, that's just one of the dimensions. A better one is whether it's old or new money. Inherited or Original. (Hard to define since old money might be wisely used to create original wealth.)

The divide I use (when I have to) uses old vs new and in which industry the wealth was generated. Early 20th century wealth generation in the US looked very different than late 20th century and not just because of industrial changes. The US as a whole was rich at the start and vastly more wealthy at the end of the century with most of the wealth NOT belonging to the elites contrary to what Piketty claims. I count human intellectual capital while he doesn't and the US became insanely wealthy over the century.

George Carty said...

Alfred, I was dividing the wealth elite based on political allegiance (liberal vs. conservative) and then looking at the correlation between industry and political alignment.

Some of it has obvious motivations: wealth from the land is a zero-sum game which thus encourages exclusionary politics, while wealth from brainpower fit well with an inclusive and pro-diversity politics.

Tony Fisk said...

I shall ping forthwith.

Tim H. said...

There's anew entry @ stone kettle.com:

https://www.stonekettle.com/2022/06/when-good-men-do-nothing.html

A difficult thing building sufficient enthusiasm with stop gaps and half loaves, however preferable they might be to whatever abject horror next soils the banner of conservatism.

Robert said...

https://www.stonekettle.com/2022/06/when-good-men-do-nothing.html

And in the words of Peter Watts: "If you do nothing, what makes you any fucking good?"

Robert said...

Isn't it the case that the United States has two wealthy elites...

Musk and Thiel are both tech billionaires, supporting the Republicans while doing the same kind of thing as the Kochs (minus the emissions).

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S-Jo-djilvo

I'm not convinced that new money, or tech backgrounds, makes much of a difference.

locumranch said...


Today's international news confirms my worldview:

In an attempt to gain admission into the NATO social compact (which, coincidently, requires the unanimous consent of all NATO members), previously neutral Sweden & Finland beg an audience with Turkey's (Anti-Democratic; Anti-Semitic) Erdogan only to kiss his ring, designate the PKK & most Kurds as 'a criminal terrorist organisation' and announce that the arrest & deportations of criminal Kurds to Turkey will begin immediately.

Keep telling your idealist selves that there are 'two wealthy elites' in the mistaken belief that the SMART (and therefore good) ones on your side will be spared when the tumbrels roll, so either fail-to-plan or plan accordingly.

And, poor Matthew, who promotes open warfare between rival US factions and recently argued that 'pain is the best teacher'(!!), only proves that he has led a coddled & consequence-free existence and has learned nothing from history.


Best

Larry Hart said...

Clarence Thomas's hypocricy for all to see...

https://www.electoral-vote.com/evp2022/Senate/Maps/Jun30.html#item-6

[Judge Ketanji Brown] Jackson is joining a Court in turmoil. Some of the decisions it released this month are extremely unpopular. It is inevitable that next term will have more cases that are equally controversial, especially since Justice Clarence Thomas is champing at the bit to overturn Obergefell v. Hodges and Griswold v. Connecticut. For some odd reason, he seems less enthusiastic to take the axe to Loving v. Virginia although the reasoning behind it is the same as the others.

Der Oger said...

Coup d'etat by the judiciary. That is odd & new.
Usually it is the executive and sometimes the parliament that attempts to putsch.

-----------------------------------------------------

Musk isn't "New Money". His parents have been apartheid-era gemstone mining magnates.

matthew said...

SCOTUS has granted cert to Moore v. Harper for next term. This is the "can state legislatures ignore voters, state constitutions, and state Supreme courts in order to overturn elections" case. There were four votes yes before Barnett joined the court.
SCOTUS expansion or end of our democratic experiment.

Jon S. said...

"I count human intellectual capital..."

Figure I'll count "human intellectual capital" the day I can use my education, sans additional cash, to make a down payment on a car or buy a loaf of bread. (Turns out that if you haven't found a way to exploit your intellect in a fashion that causes others to give you money, an IQ of 163 is worth slightly less than the paper used to send you the Mensa acceptance letter.)

Or, as the man once said, "If you're so rich, why ain't you smart?"

Larry Hart said...

Of course, there's also still time for God to save us from Clarence Thomas or Samuel Alito the same way He saved us from Scalia.

Larry Hart said...

My earlier comment got so messed up format-wise that I didn't want to leave it out there. Here is the improved version:

matthew:

This is the "can state legislatures ignore voters, state constitutions, and state Supreme courts in order to overturn elections" case.


Again, in a rational country, the court would be constrained to rule 9-0 against, or at least refuse to take the case. The professor cited below is exactly right--what does it even mean for a legislature to decide anything outside of the state constitution which establishes the legislature in the first place? The legislature is not a living entity with a voice--its decisions are voted on under rules and processes established by the state constitution. If they can then violate the state constitution, who's to say that a majority vote in the chamber represents a decision? Why not a 60% supermajority like in the Senate, or why not require unanimity?

If Republican legislatures send such slates of electors to congress in 2025, Democrats should do exactly what Republicans tried to do in 2021 and object to every such slate. And let Kamala Harris decide, since the prevailing theory seems to be that Mike Pence could have done so had he the "courage".

Or better still, since stare decisis no longer means anything, it's time to overturn Marbury vs Madison.

https://www.npr.org/2022/06/30/1107648753/supreme-court-north-carolina-redistricting-independent-state-legislature-theory

To Shapiro, the Chicago-Kent College of Law professor, the theory "doesn't make any sense at all."

"The legislatures are created by constitutions. Their powers are defined by constitutions. The way those powers interact with other branches of state government is defined by state constitutions. Limitations on those powers are defined by state constitutions," says Shapiro, who wrote an upcoming article on the theory's origins and implications for The University of Chicago Law Review. "The idea that there's some kind of legislative power that is separate and apart from the ordinary constitutional limitations is really quite remarkable and lawless."

Alfred Differ said...

Pfft.

I'm sure Sweden will be arresting and deporting lots of Kurds.

Political theater.

Many NATO states don't like each other.
No big deal.

David Brin said...

GC: "How much of the USA's post-WWII golden age was simply down to a relative lack of foreign competition (as the rest of the world was either still undeveloped or rebuilding from the war)?"

Make a little sense, sure, we were the surviving behemoth. But you leave out the fact that the rest of the world was so poor they couldn't buy anything.

One engine was the Marshall Plan, buying tractors and such from US makers to send to help overseas. But the driver of US development in the 50s was the same as China in the 90s+. ... the US consumer.

--

Locum, go take vitamins, please? You aren't even hitting NEAR us with your spittle.

--

All analysts say Erdogan got nothing of substance... a couple of PKK guys living in Sweden will move somewhere else. Not a peep from the Kurds, who love us, despite Trump's betrayals. Erdogan had a limit to his bluster. His danger is always the Turklish military, who would rise up if Turkey were suspended from NATO.

---

Robert, let's bet real cash over whether Biden/Pelosi have 'done nothing.'
Robert, Thiel deeply wants utter feudalism. Elon is swinging rightward entirely because screaming at an Asperger guy is diametrically counter-productive and yet our lefties just can't stop.

---

Larry Hart said...

Alfred Differ:

I'm sure Sweden will be arresting and deporting lots of Kurds.

Political theater.


Besides, "Good guys have to appease authoritarian strongman in order to have anything accomplished" is kind of a "dog bites man" story by now. The real point is that for whatever reason, Erdogan accepted an excuse not to run interference for Putin.

Larry Hart said...

Serious question--why does the supreme court even bother pretending to use legal reasoning to get from the written law to the outcome they desire? They might as well just admit what everyone knows--that they're engaging in the equivalent of jury nullification. "This is our decision because we can vote however we damn well feel like." Would that make them appear more illegitimate than they already do when their decisions contain actual factual lies (like "The coach was praying privately on his own") and flawed logic ("We must be true to the principle of stare decisis by overturning previous decisions."), and contradictions ("This ruling will affect only abortion. Now let's revisit gay marriage and contraception. But not interracial marriage, even though it was upheld on the same legal grounds.")

I mean, their supporters know what they're doing and are happy with it. Their opponents know what they're doing but apparently can't prevent it. The great unwashed barely know what the supreme court is. So what benefit is there to them to continue to piss on us and insist that it is raining?

matthew said...

This is utter bullshit,"Elon is swinging rightward entirely because screaming at an Asperger guy is diametrically counter-productive and yet our lefties just can't stop."

Musk is a inheritance-brat fueled by apartheid money, who busts unions, ignores rampant racism in his plants, and has committed SEC fraud multiple times.

Just because he does a couple things you personally like, Dr. Brin, and has an assistant that takes your calls does *not* excuse all the crap he is trying to pull.

Dwight Williams said...

Larry: the pure sociopathic version of joy that comes from torturing their chosen prey is the benefit. This is how bullies operate. For related reasons, Matthew's characterization of Elon Musk seems entirely on-target to me.

David Brin said...

The best engineers on the planet seek to work for him. I don't see any of you preeners attacking Thiel or any of the useless inheritance brats anywhere near as viciously as you lassh out at the guy who advanced electric cars by fifteen years and gave America its space mojo back and put up 2 million solar roofs.

scidata said...

Biden has some clever writers.
"Instead of the Finlandization of NATO, he got the NATOization of Finland."

Alan Brooks said...

It is right to insult Thomas’ wife Ginni, as a judge ought to have good (or at least fair) judgment in all things—which is saying that Thomas marrying a ding-dong and defending her outbursts demonstrates a certain lack of judgment.
George Will last week again praised Thomas, on the Second Amendment: writing that Thomas wrote with his “usual meticulousness” a 60+ page opinion on interpreting the Amendment.
So if the opinion had been 90 pages, would it be that much more ‘meticulous’?

David Brin said...

GFWill is the Worst American.

DP said...

Until today I still thought we had some hope for the future.

The oil companies (thanks to Citizens United) own Congress.

Nothing will get passed into law.

The planet will burn.

DP said...

" inheritance brats "

The son of wealthy parents who owned an opal mine fits this description.

Robert said...

Robert, let's bet real cash over whether Biden/Pelosi have 'done nothing.'

That wasn't the point of the Stonekettle article, was it? What I got from it was that you have to vote, every time, or you're doing nothing and letting the bad guys win.

Maybe it reads differently to an American?

Larry Hart said...

Robert:

"Robert, let's bet real cash over whether Biden/Pelosi have 'done nothing.'"

That wasn't the point of the Stonekettle article, was it?


I have to agree with Robert. Stonekettle was excoriating those who complain about Biden/Pelosi doing nothing (and therefore don't bother voting for Democrats). He wasn't expressing that evaluation himself.

From the Stonekettle piece (emphasis mine) :

So, in case I'm being too subtle here, in case you've read this far and you haven't figured out where I'm going, it's this:

This is your 2022, 2024 CLARION CALL TO SHOW THE HELL UP.

No more bullshit.

No excuses.

No more "both sides."

I don't want to hear about how disappointed you are with Biden or Pelosi or democrats. I don't want to hear any whining about how you don't like the choices. Any of this childish nonsense about how you want better choices.

Too damn bad.

This isn't about what you like, it's about your duty as a citizen.

This is it. You can't depend on anyone else to save you, to save your country, to save your kid's future.

duncan cairncross said...

Dr Brin
A while back we discussed a book that started with the questions we all get wrong - like the percentage of kids that get an education

I cannot remember enough to find it again

Can you or any of the others help me?

Alan Brooks said...

Ginni’s husband strikes again:
https://www.politico.com/news/2022/06/30/clarence-thomas-claims-covid-vaccines-are-derived-from-the-cells-of-aborted-children-00043483

David Brin said...

"The son of wealthy parents who owned an opal mine fits this description"

Your call. But he is one of the only inheritors of wealth I can name who did what the Mad Right CLAIMS they all do, risk it all to create new ventures that benefit us all.

I am not unaware of his flaws. What I am is sick of twits going after him FIRST, when there are mafiosi, casino moguls, Kochs, Waltons, Putin cronies, Murdochs, r'oil princes ad infinitum. And EM used to be our ally against all that! Till he was harried and shrieked at by dopes who have zero sense of scale. And STILL the best people will drop anything and everything to work for him.

Anyone who has inveighed and fought against plutocratic oligarchy more than I did in EARTH and in EXISTENCE may have a right to yowl at me, as Matthew just did. Matthew himself, to the best of my knowledge, arrogates too much, compared to his efforts.

duncan cairncross said...

Found it
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0769XK7D6/ref=kinw_myk_ro_title

Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About The World - And Why Things Are Better Than You Think

Jon S. said...

Dr. Brin, we're not going after Musk first - he just catches a lot of it because his moves are even more obviously egregious than, for instance, Thiel (who mostly moves in the background in his efforts to destroy our society).

However, you seem to be slowly turning into one of those weird Elon fanbois who desperately throw themselves against any perceived attack against His Holiness Musk the First. For crying out loud, it's pretty public knowledge that (for instance) Tesla Motors was an existing corporation, with existing plans to use their new technology to build a sports car to capture imaginations, that had merely been looking for a financial backer, and Musk's sole contribution was to use some (small) fraction of his inherited trust fund to purchase the company, then sue the founders any time they mentioned that he wasn't one of them. The SpaceX rocket was the result of a monetary challenge, and its subsequent success is due in large part to a heavy governmental thumb on the scales (in the form of massive subsidies not provided either Blue Origin or Virgin Galactic). And as an autistic myself, I'd like to think I'm pretty good at spotting my own kind. He strikes me as more of an outright asshole who claims to be autistic in an attempt to deflect anyone pointing out his assholery.

duncan cairncross said...

Jon S
Your ravings are so far from the truth that I suspect Locum is somehow sock puppeting you!!

Complete and TOTAL BALLS
Musk's wealth came from a games company then the company that became PayPal - No bloody trust funds involved
His influence on Tesla has been HUGE - before he was involved Tesla wanted to go the same way as all of the other EV failures - an "Eco Car"
And its total insanity to say that SpaceX has had more subsidies than the others!!
SpaceX provides a SERVICE and is paid for that service
Musk has contributed more to help the future of Humanity than anybody else in the last 50 years

Robert said...

An article about Musk's subsidies:

https://www.businessinsider.com/elon-musk-list-government-subsidies-tesla-billions-spacex-solarcity-2021-12


This article might be of interest, given some of the topics discussed here:

https://aip.scitation.org/doi/abs/10.1063/5.0090017

Larry Hart said...

The headline says it all...

https://www.cnn.com/2022/07/01/politics/us-climate-decision-supreme-court-threat-to-world/index.html

The Supreme Court’s conservative majority is a threat to the world

Alan Brooks said...

Dobbs is the most savored victory for the Right since the first battle of Bull Run.

David Smelser said...

LH asked "Serious question--why does the supreme court even bother pretending to use legal reasoning to get from the written law to the outcome they desire?"

I think the main reason is so that they can refer to their own rulings when making future rulings. Go read their current rulings and look at how often they quote themselves.

Jon S. said...

Duncan, his initial fortune came from an emerald mine that his grandfather reportedly stole from native African miners. He was extremely wealthy before he ever got here.

Try checking out actual historical reports, not just what Elon and his fans are claiming. Even the Wikipedia article, which has doubtless been "edited" on occasion, makes note of this (his first venture, an online yellow-pages search engine, was started with funds acquired from his father).

Incidentally, while researching this, I did learn that Musk did not found, nor have anything to do with the creation of, PayPal. As noted here:

In 1999, Musk co-founded X.com, an online financial services and e-mail payment company.[54] The startup was one of the first federally insured online banks, and, in its initial months of operation, over 200,000 customers joined the service.[55] The company's investors regarded Musk as inexperienced and replaced him with Intuit CEO Bill Harris by the end of the year.[56] The following year, X.com merged with online bank Confinity to avoid competition.[44][56][57] Founded by Max Levchin and Peter Thiel,[58] Confinity had its own money-transfer service, PayPal, which was more popular than X.com's service.[59]

Within the merged company, Musk returned as CEO. Musk's preference for Microsoft software over Unix created a rift in the company and caused Thiel to resign.[60] Due to resulting technological issues and lack of a cohesive business model, the board ousted Musk and replaced him with Thiel in September 2000.[61][c] Under Thiel, the company focused on the PayPal service and was renamed PayPal in 2001.[63][64] In 2002, PayPal was acquired by eBay for $1.5 billion in stock, of which Musk—the largest shareholder with 11.72% of shares—received $175.8 million.[65][66] In 2017, Musk purchased the domain X.com from PayPal for an undisclosed amount, explaining it has sentimental value.[67][68]

Alfred Differ said...

Jon S,

Every investor brings money from somewhere.

As for PayPal, a lot of us know the story. Musk's fanboys blow the trumpet too much, but it's not that different from what happens with respect to other CEO's with egos.

The primary job of a CEO is "chief sales person" where they are the closer on big deals. Much of that relies upon reputation. Much of sales does too. Those of us who know it just look past the fluff to the numbers behind it.

As for experience as a CEO, we all acquire it through hard lessons. Steve Jobs became a better CEO after getting canned at Apple. He was always a visionary, but CEO's do a different job. Musk learned too... and has plenty more to learn.

---

No one is puppeting Duncan. It would be pretty obvious if they were.

Some of us are willing to put up with character flaws to get benefits from those around us. Musk has learned enough to gather large, effective teams around him. Those teams are pushing a vision of the future some of us like. A lot.

Larry Hart said...

David Smelser:

LH asked "Serious question--why does the supreme court even bother pretending to use legal reasoning to get from the written law to the outcome they desire?"

I think the main reason is so that they can refer to their own rulings when making future rulings. Go read their current rulings and look at how often they quote themselves.


How long before they just do the Trump thing, "Many people are saying..." ?

David Brin said...

Again (and again) EM did with his inherited mid-level wealth what the Rand/Federalist/MintonFriedmanites all said ALL inheritance brats would do... invest in risky but potentially highly productive enterprises. Now... right now... name another who actually did that. I can, but can you?

Tesla's econo-car was utterly doomed (and did fail). Elon brilliantly saw how incredible the e-motors had become and made and made the Roadster, instead, which at ONE stroke uttely killed the 100 year bad rep of EVs. At ONE stroke he made it clear. Now bet me on the timing of when thebig car companies stopped squashing EV startups and started establishing instead their own EV development lines?

What? No bet?

Yes, Obama switched some of the lamprey-leech suck of subsidies from vampire Lockheed-Boeing/ULA to SpaceX... and ...it... paid... off. VERY soon, which is what subsidies are supposed to do. SpaceX broke every expectation, delivered on every promise and became insanely profitable while driving down launch costs for the taxpayer. Three times it skated close to being killed by ULA and their in-pocket senators. But Obama ran interference and Elon staked everything he had, to bridge those gaps.

There is nothing whatsoever that Jon S said that is even remotely in the ballpark of true. Well, maybe the Paypal stuff. So? BFD. Em was better at building real stuff.

Larry Hart said...

What I was trying to say after the 2016 election...

https://www.nytimes.com/2022/06/30/opinion/trump-january-6-cassidy-hutchinson.html

What has Trump’s presidency taken from us? I’m reasonably sure that many Americans feel the same loss that I do, and I’m struggling to assign just one word to it.

Innocence? Optimism? Faith? Go to the place on the Venn diagram where those states of mind overlap. That’s the piece of me now missing when I look at this beloved country of mine.

Trump snuffed out my confidence, flickering but real, that we could go only so low and forgive only so much.

Der Oger said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Alfred Differ said...

Switching from an econo-car to a roadster is exactly the kind of thing done by someone who knows a thing or two about sales.

Anyone who can get a VC to let them in the door to make a pitch has seen the related questions.

1. What is your market? How big is it? Who are your competitors? What fraction of total sales to you expect to capture?

followed up by...

2. Why not this other related market? Where does the experience of your sales team excel? What secondary sales can you make? Describe tangential offshoot business lines related to your primary goal.

If you walk into a meeting with them already have the tech guys in your team, they will graft a sales team onto you IF they are interested. That often means adopting their suggested CEO. Smart tech guys will smile and say "Yes sir" because revenue opens the door to future investment rounds, tangential businesses, and those tech people being grafted into some other business the VC's know that need some engineering help.

Lone cowboy CEO's building everything from scratch is romantic claptrap. That dream is easy to believe, though, because TRAINED CEO's walking into a team that needs them make it look effortless.

Tell me about this. Do that. Hire talent for such and such teams. Trim your expectations in this round, but keep them for the next. Etc.

Fanboys are just that. Believers in the romantic claptrap. Look past them at what the well led, effective teams are doing to understand the real impact of strong leadership.

Alfred Differ said...

Few people "love" the Americans

Heh. Something must be amiss with them. 8)

Another error some of us make is to think of the Kurds as one bloc. They aren't. They've been divided for many centuries and their neighbors take advantage of that.

Turkey can't afford to leave NATO if Greece remains a member. Same also the other way around. Not yet anyway. Maybe in another generation if Turkey moves back into the power vacuum left by the disappearance of the Ottomans.

David Brin said...

Actually, I never cease to be amazed by how much goodwill there is out there - around the globe - toward Americans, who are generally rather well liked compared to most rivals and certainly compared to any past Imperium. The success of Hollywood propaganda may be one factor, along with the visible diversity of our cultural and political (though not financial or wealth) leader castes.

Another factor may be that the world sees us relentlessly criticising ourselves for our faults. Our children are trained to do it. So were most of you. While that serves ammo to our rivals, it also neutralizes much of the rancor.

duncan cairncross said...

Alfred - great "theory" about how it all works

Killed stone dead by the actual FACTS of the case

In hindsight the idea of making a Car that car people would buy is obvious

At the time there were dozens - possibly hundreds - of wanna be EV makers - and they all missed the obvious - despite their VC's and all of that

Reminds me of my University training where beer soaked engineering students would learn in a few hours something that some genius double brain took 20 years to develop

Following is always easier

scidata said...

It's not just Hollywood propaganda. I've traveled and worked a lot in the US. Americans almost invariably, in every state red/blue/purple have a common trait. They are truly interested and curious about outlanders. Even if they quickly revert to American exceptionalism/superiority, for a brief, shining moment, they want to hear tales from the horizon. It is so charming.

DP said...

Something they don't teach you in right wing Sunday school.

The Bible has a recipe for an abortion which was used in a ritual known as the "Ordeal of Bitter Waters"

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ordeal_of_the_bitter_water

The ordeal of the bitter water was a trial by ordeal administered to the wife whose husband suspected her of adultery but who had no witnesses to make a formal case (Numbers 5:11–31)

Basically, if an Israelite husband suspects his wife of fooling around - and the child she may be carrying is not his - but has no witnesses, he will take her to the tabernacle and and put her to the test by making her drink "bitter water" mixed with dust from the floor of the tabernacle along with ink used to write curses on a scroll.

16 “‘The priest shall bring her and have her stand before the Lord. 17 Then he shall take some holy water in a clay jar and put some dust from the tabernacle floor into the water. 18 After the priest has had the woman stand before the Lord, he shall loosen her hair and place in her hands the reminder-offering, the grain offering for jealousy, while he himself holds the bitter water that brings a curse. 19 Then the priest shall put the woman under oath and say to her, “If no other man has had sexual relations with you and you have not gone astray and become impure while married to your husband, may this bitter water that brings a curse not harm you. 20 But if you have gone astray while married to your husband and you have made yourself impure by having sexual relations with a man other than your husband”— 21 here the priest is to put the woman under this curse—“may the Lord cause you to become a curse[b] among your people when he makes your womb miscarry and your abdomen swell. 22 May this water that brings a curse enter your body so that your abdomen swells or your womb miscarries.”

Different translations use the euphemism of "rotted thighs" for miscarriage's and abdomen is the Hebrew usage for womb.

23 “‘The priest is to write these curses on a scroll and then wash them off into the bitter water. 24 He shall make the woman drink the bitter water that brings a curse, and this water that brings a curse and causes bitter suffering will enter her. 25 The priest is to take from her hands the grain offering for jealousy, wave it before the Lord and bring it to the altar. 26 The priest is then to take a handful of the grain offering as a memorial[c] offering and burn it on the altar; after that, he is to have the woman drink the water. 27 If she has made herself impure and been unfaithful to her husband, this will be the result: When she is made to drink the water that brings a curse and causes bitter suffering, it will enter her, her abdomen will swell and her womb will miscarry, and she will become a curse. 28 If, however, the woman has not made herself impure, but is clean, she will be cleared of guilt and will be able to have children.

About that "dust". That would be the sweepings of the tabernacle's burnt animal offerings, a nasty bacteriological soup, and myrrh (on of the three gifts given to baby Jesus by the Wise Men). Myrrh was kept burning in the tabernacle as an incense mixed with other spices. So the dust would be a mixture of ash and soot from the incense and burnt animals.

However, myrrh is an abortifacient.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5265628/

And at the time around when this was written they were still sacrificing animals, so blood, urine, feces, and general intestinal ick would likely be present in the dirt of the tabernacle floor as well. So you've got a natural abortifacient and a whole slew of nasty bacteria.

DP said...

Myrrh was also used as a contraceptive as in the book of Esther as used by Queen Esther and other wives of the Persian king.

https://www.salon.com/2014/01/05/biblical_birth_control_the_surprisingly_contraception_friendly_old_testament/

In an article in the scholarly journal Conservative Judaism, Rabbi Joseph Prouser points out that the King’s potential wives were all required to anoint themselves with myrrh oil and aromatic herbs for one full year – which is a pretty long time for what some read as just a beauty treatment. Myrrh was a known contraceptive at the time, cited in the writings of Soranus of Ephesus, a Greek physician who was an expert on gynecology and midwifery. He explained that when used in a pessary, myrrh oil would work as an abortifacient, preventing the implantation of fertilized eggs. The aromatic herbs may have also had contraceptive properties.

So let's sum this up: An Israelite husband suspects his wife has been fooling around but has no witnesses. So he makes here drink "biter water". If she is pregnant, the fetus gets aborted right there in the tabernacle and his rival's baby is killed. If she is not pregnant I guess he figures no harm no foul. But it's a crap shoot whether the woman survives ingesting all of that filth from the tabernacle floor. And it's possible both she and her lover's baby survive. Anyway its all seen as God's judgement.

But the Bible isn't exactly what we would call pro-life now is it?

DP said...

As for the fetus, according to the Bible in Exodus 21 some fetuses are more equal than others.

https://humanjourney.org.uk/articles/exodus-21-and-abortion/

When men strive together and hit a pregnant woman, so that her children come out [yatsa], but there is no harm [ason], the one who hit her shall surely be fined, as the woman's husband shall impose on him, and he shall pay as the judges determine. But if there is harm, then you shall pay life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, burn for burn, wound for wound, stripe for stripe.

The Revised Standard Version translates 'her children come out' with the phrase 'there is a miscarriage'. This implies that the 'harm' refers only to the woman. This is explicit in the New Jerusalem Bible: 'she suffers a miscarriage but no further harm is done'. On this interpretation the death of the unborn child merits a 'fine' but further harm to the mother merits 'life for life'. In favour of this interpretation is the witness of Josephus in the first century AD:

He that kicks a woman with child, so that the woman miscarry, let him pay a fine in money... as having diminished the multitude by the destruction of what was in her womb...but if she die of the stroke, let him also be put to death.

A second ancient interpretation of this passage allows that 'harm' applies to the unborn child, but only after this child is 'formed'. The most influential Greek translation of the Old Testament, the Septuagint, makes a distinction not between harm to the unborn child (a fine) and the woman (life for life) but between harm to the unformed embryo (a fine) and the formed foetus (life for life). The Jewish philosopher Philo, an older contemporary of Josephus, follows this interpretation:

If the child within her is still unfashioned and unformed, he shall be punished by a fine...But if the child had assumed a distinct shape in all its parts, having received all its proper and distinctive qualities, he shall die.

So an unformed fetus was not considered to be a human being, but something less whose death only incurred a fine not the death penalty for murder.

DP said...

Which brings us to the concept of quickening.

Until the late 1800s a fetus was not assumed by the Catholic Church to be ensouled until quickening. St. Augustine and St. Thomas Aquinas both cited a point after conception, generally the point of quickening, as the moment at which the life in the womb becomes human, meaning ensouled with a rational human soul. According to St. Augustine that occurred 40 days after conception for boys and 80 days for girls (girls being considered inferior). Abortion was always considered to be sinful by the Catholic church, but it was not considered murder until the late 19th century when Pope Pius IX released the encyclical “Apostolica Sedis Moderationi” in 1869.

The condemnation of abortion without regard to quickening or stage of fetal development is still the official doctrine of the Roman Catholic Church. Catholics who knowingly procure an abortion face excommunication.

Larry Hart said...

DP:

On this interpretation the death of the unborn child merits a 'fine' but further harm to the mother merits 'life for life'. I


So the Bible clearly ascribes personhood to the mother but not to the fetus. Clarence Thomas thinks God got it backwards.

Larry Hart said...

DP:

The condemnation of abortion without regard to quickening or stage of fetal development is still the official doctrine of the Roman Catholic Church. Catholics who knowingly procure an abortion face excommunication.


How does the Catholic church justify excommunication over a break from church doctrine on abortion when they don't excommunicate anyone over disagreeing with church doctrine on the death penalty? Is it explicit doctrine that the church rules are meant to constrain liberals and protect right-wingers?

David Brin said...

Huh. Informative stuff...

now onward

onward