Social Engineering

Staying on the subject of gays:

A bill that would have wiped clean the criminal records of thousands of gay men has fallen at its first parliamentary hurdle.

The private member’s bill would have pardoned all men living with UK convictions for same-sex offences committed before the law was changed.

Mr Nicolson says he was motivated by his work as a BBC journalist in the 1990s: “I made a documentary in the 1990s looking at the discriminatory laws which criminalised gay men.

“There were some shocking injustices. Men were arrested aged 21 for having ‘under-age sex’ with their 20-year-old boyfriends,” he said.

Section 12 of the Sexual Offences Act 1956 concerned buggery.  Which means 60 years ago politicians sat down and decided what two grown men of sound mind could and couldn’t do to one another, and how the rest of the country should treat them.  Does this sound reasonable to you?  It doesn’t to me.  There is an argument that this is what the majority population wanted, but I don’t see any reason why the wishes of the majority should be taken into account when two independent adults decide what they’re going to do behind closed doors.

Had the principle of individual freedom and liberty been in force in 1956, this law would never have come into being.  This is why the war cry of the gay movement was “Get the Government out of the Bedroom!”, implying what two men get up to is no business of the government’s or anyone else.  On that basis, the gays of the day would have had my full support.

Across the Atlantic there is a parallel: pre-Civil Rights Era laws requiring blacks to be segregated from whites, and the two treated differently.  At some point legislators sat down and determined that blacks should be treated differently from whites, and anyone breaking these laws – be they black or white – would be subject to criminal prosecution.  Regardless of whether a free individual of one colour wanted to interact with a free individual of another, this was prohibited by law, which in turn was justified on the grounds that this is what the majority wanted.  Only if individuals are truly free then they can associate with whomever they please, and it ought not to be a matter to be decided by the majority.

My point is that not so long ago legislators put severe restrictions on supposedly free individuals as to how they could interact with each other based on rather arbitrary criteria beyond the individuals’ control.  They justified these laws by saying that this is what the majority wanted and it was for the greater good of society.  These laws, the majority agreed, made for a better, safer society.

Only now we look back and most people are in agreement that these laws were an abomination and ought never to have been passed.  Hence the attempt now to pardon those in the UK and the rioting and looting in the USA.  I’m being ironic about that last one.

Fortunately politicians and the voting public learned their lesson that individual liberty and freedom is paramount and governments have no business passing legislation as to how free individuals should interact (short of causing actual physical harm or loss of property, reputation, etc. covered by laws that have been in place since Man first wandered out of the Great Rift Valley).

Oh wait.  No, actually they didn’t.  With breathtaking hubris they determined that although the last lot of politicians and voters were catastrophically wrong, they are much smarter and hence are able to write laws setting out exactly how individuals must interact in a hideously complex society to achieve the absolute optimum outcome in terms of happiness and security for all.  Clever folk, eh?

So now we have laws which actively discriminate between people of different skin colours and religions, insist that gender – which can be changed on a whim – should be both ignored and acknowledged simultaneously, maintain an ever-growing list of sexual orientations all of which deserve special treatment, allow grown men to wander into women’s toilets a fundamental human right, and make formal (and even informal) criticism of all of this practically illegal.

Whatever happened to the principle of all humans are equal?  Or the principle of individual freedom?  Well, that’s the problem: there are no principles being applied, it is simply a small group of people deciding this is what they want to do, claiming a democratic mandate, and forcing it on everyone else.  Just as they did when they criminalised gays and made blacks drink at a different fountain.

Some people call this Social Engineering, and it’s a good term.  But engineering is all about the application of principles, not doing whatever a gaggle of people fancy doing this week.  If you tried to build a bridge like this it would collapse.  As will our society if we keep this up.

Legal Tyranny

I was taking the piss a bit with yesterday’s post on this idiocy, and I think I ought to take it a bit more seriously.  Let’s consider this again:

Dr David Adamson, one of the authors of the new standards, said “It puts a stake in the ground and says an individual’s got a right to  reproduce whether or not they have a partner. It’s a big change.

“It fundamentally alters who should be included in this group and who should  have access to healthcare. It sets an international legal standard.  Countries are bound by it.”

A supranational body has basically passed a law determining how taxpayers’ money must be spent without any consultation with the respective governments or citizenry.  Wars have started over less than this.

And we have a doctor – who probably considers himself to be of unquestionable moral standing – stating this with the cold, bureaucratic arrogance of a Waffen SS officer informing a village of Belorussian peasants what’s going to happen to all males over twelve.  Things like this make me think, not for the first time, that Diderot’s quote left off a line regarding doctors.

But the bigger issue is that the last decade, or perhaps two or three, has seen social change being forced through societies not via the ballot box but top down through the courts.  More and more often we are seeing small but determined minorities bullying governments into passing laws, or interpreting existing ones, which compel the majority to adopt social attitudes with which they clearly don’t agree.  Governments and their supporters are simply bypassing the political process of obtaining popular support for their policies and simply writing them into law and arresting anyone who doesn’t comply.  If they can palm this off onto supranational organisations such as the WHO or UN – who have no democratic mandate and have no right to pass legislation in any country – then so much the better: they can simply sit back and smugly say “it’s out of our hands, it’s the law”.

Antonin Scalia’s dissent of the Supreme Court’s gay marriage decision contained a stark warning regarding this practice:

Until the courts put a stop to it, public debate over same-sex marriage displayed American democracy at its best. Individuals on both sides of the issue passionately, but respectfully, attempted to persuade their fellow citizens to accept their views. Americans considered the arguments and put the question to a vote. The electorates of 11 States, either directly or through their representatives, chose to expand the traditional definition of marriage. Many more decided not to.1 Win or lose, advocates for both sides continued pressing their cases, secure in the knowledge that an electoral loss can be negated by a later electoral win. That is exactly how our system of government is supposed to work.

This is a naked judicial claim to legislative—indeed, super-legislative—power; a claim fundamentally at odds with our system of government. Except as limited by a constitutional prohibition agreed to by the People, the States are free to adopt whatever laws they like, even those that offend the esteemed Justices’ “reasoned judgment.” A system of government that makes the People subordinate to a committee of nine unelected lawyers does not deserve to be called a democracy.

Few people heeded this warning, and we can expect to see a lot more of this kind of thing.  But sooner or later they are going to overstep the mark badly: one of the benefits of the democratic system, as opposed to a top-down legal tyranny, is that issues can be properly thrashed out and general acceptance obtained from the populace before people start being thrown in jail for non-compliance.

This won’t end well.

It’s not about Trump

I’m going to weigh in on the US Presidential elections again, and I’ll stop doing so when I think I’ve run out of stuff to say.

I read three blog posts this morning that I thought, when combined, illustrate the point which I think the vast majority of the world has missed by a mile, including the supposedly enlightened, educated middle-classes.

The first is from the ZMan:

One of the many things that has been exposed by the Trump campaign is that America does not have a two-party political system. It has a 1.3 party system.

The truth is that about a third of elected Republicans would prefer to be Democrats…There is another third or more of the party that is not interested in rocking the boat. They just like the good life and generally think the status quo is pretty good, at least for them. In another age, many would have been seat warmers in the Democrat Party, but time and circumstance put them in the GOP.

The portion of the country that self-identifies as liberal is around 20% and the portion that identifies as conservative sticks around 40%. The rest are low-tax liberals and conservatives that live in liberal states. In all probability, this group of “moderates” breaks 2-to-1 to traditional American conservatism.

The math suggests that about half the country has no party representing their interests. At best they have a third of one party, which happens to be controlled by the other party. The other 5/6ths of the political class speaks loudly and aggressively for the 20% of the public that identifies as liberal…The House leadership has made it clear that the troublesome right wingers are to remain quiet and out of the way or else.

In other words, the Republicans no longer represent those who used to vote Republican (in much the same way Britain’s Labour party abandoned their core supporters years ago and relied upon hatred of The Other and family habits to keep them voting).  This is a point most people fail to realise: those moderate, reasonable, smart Republicans didn’t win the nomination because they are Republicans in name only and have no intention of looking after the interests of those Americans who identify as Republicans.  As the ZMan says, they are basically Democrats (with the grand irony being that Trump is also a Democrat).  Why Europeans should not only understand this point but also take note of it is because it is highly likely the same situation applies in their own countries.  It is absolutely the case in Britain.

The second is this one over at Cracked, which is not generally known for its right-wing outlook, which explains the vast cultural divide between rural America and its cities:

See, rural jobs used to be based around one big local business — a factory, a coal mine, etc. When it dies, the town dies. Where I grew up, it was an oil refinery closing that did us in. I was raised in the hollowed-out shell of what the town had once been. The roof of our high school leaked when it rained. Cities can make up for the loss of manufacturing jobs with service jobs –small towns cannot. That model doesn’t work below a certain population density.

If you don’t live in one of these small towns, you can’t understand the hopelessness. The vast majority of possible careers involve moving to the city, and around every city is now a hundred-foot wall called “Cost of Living.” Let’s say you’re a smart kid making $8 an hour at Walgreen’s and aspire to greater things. Fine, get ready to move yourself and your new baby into a 700-square-foot apartment for $1,200 a month, and to then pay double what you’re paying now for utilities, groceries, and babysitters.

In a city, you can plausibly aspire to start a band, or become an actor, or get a medical degree. You can actually have dreams. In a small town, there may be no venues for performing arts aside from country music bars and churches. There may only be two doctors in town — aspiring to that job means waiting for one of them to retire or die. You open the classifieds and all of the job listings will be for fast food or convenience stores. The “downtown” is just the corpses of mom and pop stores left shattered in Walmart’s blast crater, the “suburbs” are trailer parks. There are parts of these towns that look post-apocalyptic.

I’m telling you, the hopelessness eats you alive.

And if you dare complain, some liberal elite will pull out their iPad and type up a rant about your racist white privilege.

It really does feel like the worst of both worlds: all the ravages of poverty, but none of the sympathy. “Blacks burn police cars, and those liberal elites say it’s not their fault because they’re poor. My son gets jailed and fired over a baggie of meth, and those same elites make jokes about his missing teeth!” You’re everyone’s punching bag, one of society’s last remaining safe comedy targets.

They take it hard. These are people who come from a long line of folks who took pride in looking after themselves. Where I’m from, you weren’t a real man unless you could repair a car, patch a roof, hunt your own meat, and defend your home from an intruder. It was a source of shame to be dependent on anyone — especially the government. You mowed your own lawn and fixed your own pipes when they leaked, you hauled your own firewood in your own pickup truck.

Not like those hipsters in their tiny apartments, or “those people” in their public housing projects, waiting for the landlord any time something breaks, knowing if things get too bad they can just pick up and move. When you don’t own anything, it’s all somebody else’s problem. “They probably don’t pay taxes, either! Just treating America itself as a subsidized apartment they can trash!”

Read in conjunction with the ZMan’s post, who is representing these people in rural America who make up about half the population and have seen their way of life disappear due to forces way beyond their control?  Or more importantly, who was representing them?  The Republican party?  Nope, they’re wannabe Democrats and they despise rural, conservative Americans as much as the inner-city Democrats do?  Nobody was representing them, and they have been derided, ignored, and insulted for a generation or more and finally they’ve had enough:

So yes, they vote for the guy promising to put things back the way they were, the guy who’d be a wake-up call to the blue islands. They voted for the brick through the window.

It was a vote of desperation.

To those ignored, suffering people, Donald Trump is a brick chucked through the window of the elites. “Are you assholes listening now?

It doesn’t matter that Trump isn’t going to solve any of this, just like it didn’t matter that the people who took over African countries turned out to be false prophets when the colonial powers pulled out, or were kicked out.  When the nice, moderate, polite, guys just take sides with those who are standing on your neck you vote for the first and biggest asshole who will at least appear to be on your side.  Charges of misogyny, groping, and all the rest don’t matter one jot at this point.  The educated classes who haven’t figured this out, and continue to show bewilderment at Trump’s popularity and mock those who support him as racist thickos, make Marie Antoinette look like a girl down wiv the masses and her finger on the pulse.

The third post, from Outlander Systems, I found via Bayou Renaissance Man, and makes this point in colourful fashion, so I’ll quote just the end:

Ultimately this isn’t about Trump.

It’s never been about Trump.

And that’s exactly it.  It has never been about Trump as a person since he started leading in the Republican primaries.  It is about what Trump represents, and what he represents is something that two thirds of Republican politicians, the Democratic Party, the American media, and millions upon millions of supposedly smart, insightful, educated people all over the world have got disastrously wrong.  Trump doesn’t represent boorish oafs who grope women, he represents those who are absolutely sick of the cosy stitch-up the establishment classes have imposed on ordinary Americans without a shred of shame or decency.  Trump as a person is an irrelevance, he is merely a conduit for the raging anger of millions of Americans.

As I said in my previous post on Trump, the forces which have brought him this close to the Presidency won’t go away if and when he is defeated.  There seems to be this delusion that if Hillary wins, the movement that has carried Trump will vanish having been shown the error of its ways by a tsunami of Schadenfreude from right-thinking people on Twitter and Facebook.  That simply won’t happen.

Hillary is going to find it hard enough to govern as it is, even supposing her health problems are a right-wing fabrication.  Barack Obama has effectively thrown his hands in the air and walked away from the clusterfuck he’s made in Syria, leaving American forces sat in the desert with no clear objective facing off against Russians whose mission is crystal clear and who have all the political backing they need.  Obamacare is fast unravelling with insurance companies pulling out of the programme and people’s premiums skyrocketting (boo-hoo).  The Black Lives Matter movement is growing in confidence and black men will continue to be shot by policemen, meaning we can look forward to another series of riots in US cities in 2017. Areas which were supposedly gentrifying are going to ungentrify as the police – branded as racist to a man by Obama and his gang – pull back and let Lord of the Flies play itself out on primetime news.  The legislature and courts are going to tie themselves in knots trying to figure out whether feminists have the right to their own toilets or transsexuals can barge on in.

And to whom is who is she going to turn to implement the business end of her foreign policy decisions, quell the uprisings in America’s cities, and enforce the law?  Why, those same ordinary Americans that her and the rest of the establishment absolutely despise.  If Clinton wins and continues with Obama’s policies of gutting America’s institutions – particularly the military, DoJ, FBI, police, and Supreme Court – she might find parts of the country become ungovernable before her first term is out.

As the Zman says:

Popular government cannot work when it is not popular.

This will not end well.

(See also this from Duffy in the comments.)

Reluctant Defence

One of the most frustrating things about living in Russia between 2006 and 2010, and thus having somewhat of a clue about things over there, was getting into arguments with people outside Russia in which I found myself defending Vladimir Putin.  My views on Putin are fairly well explained on this blog: I thought he did a pretty decent job between 1999 and 2007, although the bar was set ludicrously low (which his why his actions in Chechnya and elsewhere get overlooked).  And I thought he should have stepped aside in 2008 and ridden off into the sunset rather than flipping to Prime Minister and back to President again four years later.  I’ve explained why here.  Since 2008 I think Putin has taken Russia in very much the wrong direction and continues to do so, and you couldn’t possibly count me as one of his supporters.

But nevertheless I found myself defending him, leading people to think I was some sort of shill, and this was infuriating.  Whatever Putin did or didn’t do, living standards for almost all Russians improved massively between the time he took office and 2008, and possibly beyond.  The wealth (if not necessarily the wages) of ordinary Russians increased several times over, allowing them firstly to buy a car, then renovate their apartments (starting with double glazing), then buy some half-decent clothes, then buy a non-Russian car, then go on foreign holidays, and in some cases buy a dacha or second apartment.  When I first went to Russia in 2004 I saw mainly Russian cars clogging up the roads in Moscow.  When I last went to Russia in 2012 Russian cars were very much in the minority in Saint Petersburg.  And nobody has lived in a Russian apartment block in the last ten or fifteen years without violently cursing the endless crashing and banging noises as yet another neighbour carries out a programme of remont on their property.  Albeit starting from a very low base, Putin’s initial term coincided with ordinary Russians becoming more prosperous than any time in the country’s history.  The wealth wasn’t just for the oligarchs.  I found myself having to make this point quite often to foreigners.

But more often I found myself defending Putin of the charge that he is a dictator, and I still do.  Nobody sensible denies that Putin crushes any potential opposition in its infancy, runs Russia like a personal fiefdom for he and his mates, and anybody who treads on his toes even slightly ends up in an icy prison cell or fleeing abroad with whatever cash they can carry in a suitcase.  He is authoritarian and has little respect for the democratic process and goes out of his way to subvert it, but this doesn’t make him a dictator.  The difference between him and the likes of Colonel Gaddafi, Saddam Hussein, and Fidel Castro is that there are genuine elections in Russia and for the large part they are free and fair.  Yes, there is a lot of meddling and manipulation going on, and opposition parties are roughed up and chucked in jail before they can even come up with a name for themselves, but nobody denies that even without all this Putin and Yedina Rossiya – the ruling party – would not win hands down.  Indeed, the biggest mystery to me was why Putin thought it worth gaining a reputation of being anti-democratic by fiddling elections to win 90% of the vote when free and fair elections would have seen him win 75%.  My guess is old habits learned at KGB school die hard, and it’s in the nature of these guys to crush all opposition, even if it is pathetically feeble.  It’s hard to tell exactly how much without a functioning media and free elections, but Putin is undoubtedly popular among a majority of Russians and he rules – however badly – by popular consent.  My fview has always been that this needs to be acknowledged, and the reasons why properly understood, in order to deal effectively with Putin and Russia, and dismissing him as a dictator in the same vein as Bashar al-Assad or the Kims in North Korea is simply wrong and unhelpful.  So I end up jumping into arguments to defend him, which I’d really rather not do.

“Why is he rambling on about this, and when is he going to get to the point?” I hear my readers ask.  I’m getting to it.

During the second of the US Presidential debates that took place last Sunday night, one of the moderators repeatedly asked Trump whether he had ever kissed a woman without permission.  Trump initially just talked over the question and ignored it but the moderator asked again and again whether Trump had kissed a woman without permission, and persisted until Trump said “No, I have not”.  Several viewers picked up on this, with the one I follow being Ben Shapiro:

Ben Shapiro is no fan of Donald Trump (or of Hillary Clinton), but he – and others – could see that this was a deliberate set-up by the moderator to get Trump to deny something specific so that a media shit-storm would follow the next day when evidence miraculously emerges to the contrary.  And sure enough, that is exactly what has happened: the New York Times has led with a story about how Trump groped two women and now that’s all the media are talking about, including another allegation that he leered at a 10-year old girl.  Funny how quickly those intrepid reporters at the NYT managed to get these women on the phone and the story written a day or two after the debate, isn’t it?  It’s almost as if they had it prepared in advance.

Another Twitter user, Luke Thompson, gets it right I think (read from bottom to top):


The second from top is the clincher: nobody is assessing the stories.  The whole point is to get an allegation out there and run it so many times that it becomes the established truth.  I make no excuses for Trump’s behaviour, and I am sure that some or most of it is true and he did engage in groping, kissing, and other stuff that some or most women might not have wanted.  He’s going to have to defend himself on that score.

What I object to is the blatant, coordinated mission by the media and whoever is encouraging them to set up a Presidential candidate in such a manner using a supposedly disinterested “moderator” in the debate as a key actor in the process.  It is an absolute disgrace, not so much for what they are doing but the brazenness with which they are doing it.  The establishment figures that are behind this – Democrats, the media, wet Republicans – clearly hold the population in such utter contempt that they think they can wheel out half a dozen allegations of assault – some of which supposedly took place 30 years ago –  at this stage in the campaign using such tactics and everyone will be fooled by it.

I think this is going to backfire badly.  As I said in a previous post, you don’t need to be a Trump supporter to be concerned about this, and I believe a goodly number of decent America are already reluctantly defending Trump and prepared to vote for him just to ensure this kind of condescending stitch-up by the political and media establishments doesn’t pay off.  A lot of Americans have realised that if they allow this sort of behaviour to go unpunished in the polls it will be deployed against any future, decent Republican candidate who threatens the cosy status quo the elites have built for themselves.

I think this is the first election in which social media is properly laying bare the corruption which lies at the heart of American Presidential elections.  Via Bayou Renaissance Man I came across this post at Conservative Tree House about Hillary’s polling figures.  Short version: the company which ran the poll is a paid-up member of the Clinton election campaign.  Whether this is true or not – and I have no reason to think it isn’t from what I have read – the fact that it is not only believable but wholly unsurprising that makes it so bad.  If a blogger with a couple of hours to spare can reveal such manipulation, it means the people behind it aren’t even trying to cover their tracks.  They assume the people are too stupid to notice, or if they do they are powerless to do anything about it.  The contempt is staggering.

Right from the start of the primaries for the party nominations this election campaign has seen no end of these sorts of shenanigans (remember the coin tosses?).  The Russians will have been following events with a keen interest, and now they have all the ammunition they need to defend themselves against charges that the ruling elites control the media and force them to do their bidding.  Comparisons between Russia and America are often silly, but it is going to be increasingly difficult after this election for the US to criticise Russia in regards of their treatment of the media and their own election irregularities.

I am sure millions of ordinary Americans are watching this with absolute horror, disgusted at the way their institutions are being corrupted in order to maintain the ruling elite’s grip on power.  Like me defending Putin when I feel it is necessary, I think there will be a lot of Americans who find themselves in the unenviable position of defending Trump when they’d really prefer that they didn’t have to.

Russia and the USA: Converging in the S-Bend

In the comments of my most recent post on Trump, regular commenter and fellow blogger Alex K. spots an interesting similarity between Russia and the USA:

In the late 1990s, people who posted about the Clintons deserving pink (prison issue) undies and the MSM being leftwing through and through sounded like boring whiners unloading their loserdom into cyberspace. Losers or not, apparently some of them were right, but it only became obvious to me during this campaign how incredibly corrupt HRC always was and how the US media is capable of lying. They are catching up with Putin’s state media the way they play fast and loose with facts and work up fits of hysteria.

I noted this partly because I came across another unsavoury similarity between the two nations, also in a blog comment, over at David Thompson’s:

It doesn’t matter what you do. You are the object, not the subject. Consistency on the side of the rule-makers is not only not required, it would get in their way.
I knew we were doomed back about 1980 when I heard an account of a small meat-packer who got in trouble with OSHA (US Federal Occupational Health And Safety). Their inspector noticed the removable cleaning hatch on the packaging line, and told them the presence of the hole in the machine was a violation. Shop owner replies that the Cal-OSHA (California state equivalent) inspector had insisted on the hatch. Too bad, violation, pay up and weld it closed. “But what about Cal-OSHA? They’ll fine me and make me re-install it.” “Not our problem.”

There is a paragraph near the end of John Mole’s I was a Potato Oligarch where the Moscow police department orders him to install bars in the window of his restaurant’s kitchen as a security measure, only for the fire department to fine him for those very same bars.  Of course in Russia this was a deliberate scam to keep the income via bribes or fines flowing and in the USA it is simply bureaucratic incompetence paired with callousness, but the result is the same for the end user.

It’s hard to see how either country is moving in the right direction.

More on Trump

Now I’ll deal with the American situation.

Trump’s remarks that emerged over the weekend have done major damage to his hopes of becoming the next President of the USA.  I listened to them and they struck me as pretty awful for two reasons, and I’m no shrinking violet.

Firstly, this cannot be dismissed as banter between mates because Trump and Billy Bush were not having the discussion in this context.  They were not made during a backyard barbecue or a camping trip, or in a locker room, but rather in the course of Bush going about his day-job.  It therefore came across more as bragging to a semi-fan who he didn’t know particularly well than robust conversation between mates, and in that context it doesn’t sound good at all.  It’s the difference between me telling my close friend at his house what I got up to that night in Prague and boasting of it to the new guy in the office.  One is fine, the other is not.

But what makes it worse is they were discussing a girl they were about to meet in her professional capacity.  I find it extremely distasteful that somebody should talk about a woman in such a manner seconds before going to meet her in that context (as opposed to going up to somebody in a bar, etc.)  I have been in professional situations where a very attractive woman has presented herself, and of course the guys in the room take note.  But they do so in a downplayed context such as “Oh, she’s nice!” and make a knowing smile, which reveals what we’re all thinking.  It might even go so far as a remark like “I wouldn’t mind taking her out” but would never drop to the level of “I’d like to grab her by the pussy” or use similar language.  That’s just classless, and a president needs to be classy.  Trump came across as boorish and lacking class, and I think this will do him more damage than the actual substance of what he was saying.

But for all the outrage from the establishment media, Democrats, and wet Republicans they have spectacularly missed the point.  Millions of ordinary people are absolutely fed up with the establishment, media, and wet Republicans and so have turned to Trump out of desperation rather than any hope that he will run the country competently.  As I have said before, Trump is a mere symptom of the appalling state of US politics whereby Hillary, the media, and the rest of the establishment are the leading cause.  Trump is popular precisely because he pisses all over that which the establishment hold dear, and all the outrage about is latest remarks is merely going to confirm that, in the eyes of many, he is the right man for the job – that job being to piss off the establishment to maximum effect.  The very fact that a media corporation chose to sit on the tapes for 11 years before releasing them weeks before the vote only reinforces the perfectly valid view that the media giants are all in the tank for Hillary and seek to influence the election in her favour.  Do they really think that making Trump look like an oaf is worth confirming millions of people’s worst fears about the rotten state of the US media-political relationship?  Even if Trump doesn’t win and disappears from the public eye after November (some chance), the damage done to the media will be permanent.  It is incredibly short-sighted.

Then you have dickheads like Robert de Niro popping up with a rant about how he wants to punch Trump in the face.  Well, have a guess what?  Trump supporters really don’t care what multi-millionaire celebrities think, they have known for years that your lot vote in a block for the Democrats regardless of policies.  Trump’s popularity is a backlash against this very sort of pointless posturing which does nothing other than to show that the darlings of the establishment are so far removed from ordinary people they might as well live on another planet.  And the same goes for the wet Republicans who are standing up to denounce Trump: they were rejected for being wet Republicans and they confirm this beyond all possible doubt by showing the same self-serving spineless behaviour that propelled Trump to the nomination in the first place.  When will these idiots learn?

The media is no better.  They denounce Trump as being a dickhead, yet prefer to devote pages of newsprint to the feelings of a former Miss Universe-turned-getaway driver rather than ask Obama, Hillary, and Trump what the hell they are doing/intend to do about the absolute, mind-boggling clusterfuck that is going on in Syria.  Apparently “speaking truth to power” involves brushing Hillary’s emails under the carpet, leaking tapes of Trump’s womanising, and ignoring the massacre in Aleppo that should be at the very top of Obama’s agenda.

Not once have these assholes stop to consider that this behaviour is precisely why they have a clown like Trump running for President.  They haven’t figured out that if the media and the establishment conspire to destroy the reasonable candidates ordinary people might want, that eventually they will start putting up wankers that the media and establishment can’t control and the good of the country be damned.

They genuinely think that if Trump gets defeated everything will go back to the way things were and the wet Republicans will fall over themselves to avoid offending the media while reasonable Republican candidates get savaged and subject to the sort of appalling, personal abuse that was directed at Sarah Palin.  It won’t: the forces that have carried Trump this far won’t go away, and if he is defeated there is every chance he will be replaced by somebody much worse as ordinary people decide that the establishment have been treated far too kindly, even by Trump.  If they weren’t so fucking arrogant, they’d have worked this out three weeks into the nomination process.

Whatever the result of this election, I think the American establishment and their clients are sleepwalking into a disaster that could see some of them hanging from lamposts within a decade or two.  This will not end well.

This Will Not End Well

Via Chateau Heartiste (many of whose views I don’t endorse, by the way, but his insight into dating and overall writing ability is superb), I came across this Townhall article by Kurt Schlichter that is worth reading in full.  I’ll quote some excerpts to give you a flavour:

See, a republic with democratic features like the United States can’t function without the possibility of discussion. It needs citizens to have the ability to rationally debate the issues, to be heard so that they can perceive the process as fair and one where they are equal participants. But that’s exactly what liberals, with tactics like political correctness, Jon Stewarty snark, and the outright lies of their vinyl-body-suited mainstream media chorus, seek to prevent. Discussion can only exist where customs and norms demand that all voices be heard, that the points of the opposition are at least characterized as something resembling what they are, and that no one is excluded from participation by the fact that they possess views of which the majority – or a powerful minority – disapproves. But instead of that, today we have a liberal elite that gleefully bludgeons people with opposing views into silence, and then pats itself on its collective back for its enlightenment.

Take our guy in the painting. He stands and says, “Well, I don’t know about this idea of letting men into ladies rooms with little girls.” And, of course, the freakshow left doesn’t address the very real problems that come with allowing grown men into restrooms with little girls. Facts merely enrage them. So there won’t be any discussion of the problem of weirdos and perverts taking advantage of this idiotic liberal nonsense that this normal guy – like any normal person – would worry about. No, instead he’ll get berated by some screaming genderfreak activist with a half-shaved head and looming daddy issues bellowing “Hate criminal!” and demanding our guy be fired from his job down at the plant for felony wrongthinking.

Leonardo has a jet and the president’s private email. Our guy has an F-150 with a smashed-in quarter panel and a busy signal. When he dares complain, they call him stupid, racist, and obsolete. He’s struggling to pay his mortgage yet they call him “privileged” because his great-great-great-great-great grandfather came from Glasgow. And he takes it, for now.

Despite a narrow win, they will claim a massive victory over people like our guy, a mandate to complete the subjugation of Americans like him. After all, he’s deplorable. He’s irredeemable. He’s unworthy of respect. His interests are unworthy of representation. The elite will heave a sigh of relief that the threat has passed, that with Felonia von Pantsuit in the Oval Office our guy and those like him can be safely ignored.

This will not end well.

That last line is one that I – being a natural pessimist and cynic – like to use a lot, and not only regarding politics.  You don’t need to be a Trump supporter, a Republican, or a Right Winger to see that a self-selected wealthy elite browbeating swathes of the population into ever-more strict silence won’t end well.  Hell, you don’t even need to agree with what the person is saying: that’s the whole point, isn’t it?

The End of Private Domain Name Registration?

Via Catallaxy Files I hear about this:

Washington (AFP) – The US government on Saturday ended its formal oversight role over the internet, handing over management of the online address system to a global non-profit entity.

The US Commerce Department announced that its contract had expired with the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, which manages the internet’s so-called “root zone.”

That leaves ICANN as a self-regulating organization that will be operated by the internet’s “stakeholders” — engineers, academics, businesses, non-government and government groups.

The move is part of a decades-old plan by the US to “privatize” the internet, and backers have said it would help maintain its integrity around the world.

US and ICANN officials have said the contract had given Washington a symbolic role as overseer or the internet’s “root zone” where new online domains and addresses are created.

But critics, including some US lawmakers, argued that this was a “giveaway” by Washington that could allow authoritarian regimes to seize control.

Which explains the email I received from my domain name host over the weekend:

ICANN, the organization tasked with overseeing domain registrations worldwide, has asked us to change the way we register domains with privatized contact information. They are demanding that we no longer register these domains as “A Happy DreamHost Customer,” but as a separate entity. To appease their lawyers, we’ve formed a separate proxy organization to do exactly that. Very soon your domains will be registered by “Proxy Protection, LLC.” Don’t worry – that’s us!

So the first week into the job ICANN – the new entity overseeing domain name registrations – is demanding an end to registrees being anonymous.  Authoritarian governments must be rubbing their hands with glee.  How long will it be before domain name hosts are required by law to obtain proof of residential address from all registrees and hand over this information to any government body which demands it?

I’d like to say I’m surprised that this has been carried out with barely a wimper from the media, but finding a politician or journalist committed to civil liberties is like finding a gangsta rapper at a bluegrass festival.

[Stephen Crocker, ICANN’s board chairman said]: “This community validated the multi-stakeholder model of Internet governance. It has shown that a governance model defined by the inclusion of all voices, including business, academics, technical experts, civil society, governments and many others is the best way to assure that the Internet of tomorrow remains as free, open and accessible as the Internet of today.”

Business, governments, techical experts, and academics.  Oh yes, those vanguards of freedom and liberty, how could I forget?

This cartoon sums things up nicely:


Thanks, Obama!