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Strange Daze: The Erosion of Agency

The Laughter Of Future Men – The Return of Scipio This America we inhabit has long been seen as the last great hope of mankind, a place where Liberty would never be extinguished no matter if it disappeared everywhere else. That charming notion no longer holds. The uniqueness of our republican experiment, forged long ago in that Philadelphia room and founded upon hard lessons taught us by the Hebrews, the Greeks, the Romans, and the Christians over 3200 years of history, is being dissolved in mere months. Its replacement will be nothing more exotic than the drearily common form of rule known throughout time and space: A self-elected Illuminati at the top, a busy multitude of minions below them toiling away in dank bureaucracies and the masses at the very bottom, upon whose shoulders will rest this entire edifice of control and rule.

In 1000 years some archeologist might stumble upon the writings of Jefferson, Madison, Adams, and all the rest of those dead men whose lives, fortunes, and sacred honor were poured out for generations of Americans yet unborn. One might wonder what the fellow would think as he rummaged through the detritus of whatever else remained of our American civilization. My guess is that he will break out in laughter.

What bad modern idea did not originate in a big city? And what bad idea is more likely to be believed in Laramie than in Philadelphia? Between city-dwellers and residents of small towns and rural communities, which group is more likely to embrace the belief that men give birth? Which group is more likely to believe the lie that America was “founded” in 1619 in order to perpetuate slavery? Which population is more likely to strongly advocate that people marry before having children? Which group is more likely to produce pampered, spoiled children? Which group is more likely to cherish liberty?

The list of differences between the Laramies of America and the big cities of America is long indeed. A study by the University of Indiana Center on Philanthropy concluded, “Rural donors donated a statistically significant higher percentage of their income to charity than urban donors did.”

Hitler learned his antisemitism in Vienna; Marx spent his adult life in London, writing his totalitarian tomes at the London Library; Pol Pot, the genocidal butcher of Cambodia, became a committed communist in Paris; Lenin engaged in his Marxist activities in St. Petersburg, Munich, London and Geneva; Stalin, born in Georgia, rose to prominence in Georgia’s largest city, its capital, Tbilisi, and spent the rest of his life in St. Petersburg and Moscow.

The idea that the city is a source of evil is ancient. The first city ever built is attributed to Cain, the first murderer in the Bible (Genesis 4:17). The Book of Genesis contains the famous story of the Tower of Babel, a tower built to reach as high as the heavens in order, Genesis tells us, “to make the builders famous.” What is less well known is that every time the Bible mentions the Tower, it mentions “the city” built alongside it: “And they said, ‘Come let us build a city and a tower with its top in the sky.’” (Genesis 11:4).

Resumed, the naming wars have –  Are you sure it’s the right that’s “pro-virus”? Bill Gates once floated the idea that the silver lining to a pandemic might be its usefulness in reducing “overpopulation.” Other progressives agree with him. And the deeply suspect “gain of function” research that the Wuhan Institute of Virology was doing with U.S. tax dollars was championed by bureaucrats like Dr. Anthony Fauci, who claims to be nonpartisan, but doesn’t act that way. As of this writing, Fauci is the highest-paid employee in the federal government, simply because he’s been there so long. I don’t begrudge the man for time on station, but he hasn’t treated actual patients in decades. That’s an issue because civil service isn’t known for accountability. Moreover, things like bedside manner and empathy don’t seem to matter much when you’re hugely influential and pulling down more than 417 big ones annually.
Is it wrong to point all this out? Hardly. However you define the political right, it’s not on team virus. It’s on team prudence.

A Look at the American Troubles – GUERRILLAMERICA As we see in most low intensity conflicts, a small percentage actually takes part in the fighting, followed by maybe 5-15% of the total population involved in active support at some level, and everyone else is just trying to live their lives. I suspect that the American Troubles would be similar.

The real problem for most Americans will be the economic, financial, and monetary destruction that results from armed conflict. While you’d think that high unemployment would enable the mobilization of millions of military-aged males, the disruption to transportation, shipping, and production likely means that many Americans will be focused on week to week survival, as opposed to actively fighting.

The greater the operational tempo and mass of fighters, the greater logistics you need. This likely means that the number of fighters remains relatively small compared to the efforts required to support them. Again, less than 5%, maybe even less than 1%, is likely to be engaged at any time. (That’s still a lot of people.)

On that note, the United States population today is some 200 times larger than Northern Ireland was from 1969-1998. So could we see 200 times the death toll? Certainly.

Wind forward 13.8 billion years, and, with its trillions of galaxies and zillions of stars and planets, the Universe is far from simple. On at least one planet, it has even managed to generate a multitude of life forms capable of comprehending both the complexity of our Universe and the puzzle of its simple origins. Yet, despite being so rich in complexity, some of these life forms, particularly those we now call scientists, retain a fondness for that defining characteristic of our primitive Universe: simplicity.

From the outset of the pandemic, there were two types of people: people who could work from home and people who couldn’t. Those people who didn’t have the luxury of working from their couch made it possible for the millions of people who were able to shelter in place and post pictures of their sourdough on Instagram. In my Los Angeles neighborhood, even at the height of the pandemic, a week didn’t pass without the sound of a gardener’s leaf blower, and the nannies I recognized from their daily walks with the children were there when the rest of the city was eerily quiet. Women got manicures in their backyard. Pajama workers got their car washed in their driveways by remote services and their toilet paper delivered through Amazon Prime. There was a dumbbell shortage as everyone attempted to combat the banana bread pounds by beefing up their home gyms.

Meanwhile, in an effort to “protect” its citizens, California began mandating militant public health policies. Public parks were closed, leaving little outdoor space for people crammed in tight quarters in dense urban centers. Schools shut down, leaving families who still had to go to work and couldn’t afford high-speed Wi-Fi and devices for each child to figure out how to get their kids to Zoom school. The local Vietnamese mom and pop, and countless other small businesses, were closed, but the mega-Walmart was allowed to stay open. At their core, these policies were structurally racist and classist, and yet there was no outcry.

As for all those automated systems we have to navigate–do any of them work so well that those profiting from them actually use them? Of course not. Do you think the mega-millionaires raking in the profits from stripping out costs and offshoring ghost-work actually use the wretched software systems their monopolies and cartels impose on the rest of us? Of course not; they have their PA, nanny, driver, gig workers, etc. take care of whatever they need done in real time in the real world. It’s the rest of us to are forced to put up with their dysfunctional, frustratingly inept software “paradise.”

The Triumph and Terror of Wang Huning – One day in August 2021, Zhao Wei disappeared. For one of China’s best-known actresses to physically vanish from public view would have been enough to cause a stir on its own. But Zhao’s disappearing act was far more thorough: overnight, she was erased from the internet. Her Weibo social media page, with its 86 million followers, went offline, as did fan sites dedicated to her. Searches for her many films and television shows returned no results on streaming sites. Zhao’s name was scrubbed from the credits of projects she had appeared in or directed, replaced with a blank space. Online discussions uttering her name were censored. Suddenly, little trace remained that the 45-year-old celebrity had ever existed.

She wasn’t alone. Other Chinese entertainers also began to vanish as Chinese government regulators announced a “heightened crackdown” intended to dispense with “vulgar internet celebrities” promoting lascivious lifestyles and to “resolve the problem of chaos” created by online fandom culture. Those imitating the effeminate or androgynous aesthetics of Korean boyband stars—colorfully referred to as “xiao xian rou,” or “little fresh meat”—were next to go, with the government vowing to “resolutely put an end to sissy men” appearing on the screens of China’s impressionable youth.


The California Version of The Green New Deal and an October 16, 2020, EPA Settlement With Transportation is What’s Creating The Container Shipping Backlog – Working CA Ports 24/7 Will Not Help, Here’s Why

Swallowing down hurt, betrayal, and humiliation is impossible to do. That is why Jesus had to go himself to do it. That is why he walks with you, carries you even, drags you along by his own almighty arm to bring you into his kingdom. And what a gracious and unlikely kingdom it is. Anyone who sins, anyone who hurts another person can be forgiven. Here is no howling, alienated wilderness. No, it is the Land of the Living, the place where all grief is comforted and healed, where God himself not only sits on the throne ruling over and blessing his people but offers up his very flesh to join you to himself and give you life forever. Hope to see you there!

One of the most tragic things about Christianity in America over the last century has been the bad bad bad idea (though nearly impossible to avoid, at least in human terms) that if you behave a certain way, or do certain works, or believe certain ideas, or pray certain prayers, God will bless you and give you your desires. That is the great tragedy of the Christian message–that God does not bless you in the way you most desire when you follow him.

Scandals from top to bottom in Joe Biden’s cabinet of horror

RON KLAIN Chief of staff

The shadow president. Insiders say Klain holds enormous sway over Biden and the agenda, and has emboldened the far-left wing of the party. When the White House decided to hold the infrastructure bill as progressives demanded, The Hill reported that Klain was the one on the phone. “One person familiar with Mr. Klain’s calls said they left liberal lawmakers with the impression that the White House was encouraging them to ‘hold firm’ against an infrastructure vote until a deal could be reached.” Now all of Biden’s spending plans are in jeopardy.

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Mike Austin October 25, 2021, 8:44 AM

    “The first city ever built is attributed to Cain, the first murderer in the Bible (Genesis 4:17).” In that single sentence is all of History. No sentence written by Thucydides, Herodotus, Gibbon, Spengler—and all the rest—comes close. We call Herodotus “the Father of History” but the real winner of that title is Moses.

  • Dirk October 25, 2021, 9:02 AM

    Thought provoking.

    Like life, nations have ups and downs as people do. “This” isn’t new, been tried a few times before. I believe deep down even the left have a moral-ethical compass.

    I also know that those who are libs early on eventually self-correct. I’m betting most here, including myself were very impressionable, in our youth. Life just has a way of self-correcting.

    I’ll not be giving up on these United States, ever.

    Was a time, well a couple, when silly me, thought WE had reached that point. We were going to correct all which is wrong in our nation. Hold trials, upon conviction hang the traitors responsible.

    Like I said silly me.

    I’ve recognized my mistake of hanging out on websites, chalked full of angry old men, good men, never the less toothless old dogs, making nothing but useless noise.

    I’ll say this, not a thing has changed on the mountain, nothings going to change, not in my lifetime. Keep barking boys! It’s good for the soul.


    • El Polacko October 25, 2021, 10:36 AM

      A great comment that has me reflecting on way back when people thought dislodging a ruling elite that has been honing its population control chops since before Noah’s Flood was even possible.

      I’ve come around to understanding that the Donald, being a card carrying member of the global oligarch’s multibillionaire’s club, was just an entertaining diversion while the full surveillance and control potential of the internet revolution was cemented in place.

      Still, I have no regrets over voting for him. He was and still is the most entertaining individual to have held the office.

      Free and fair elections are and always were a fantasy, because if elections really changed anything, they wouldn’t let us do it.

      The kiddies think men can have babies and commies are cool, while the toothless old Boomers start taking their dirt naps.

      It was fun while it lasted, and right now was and is still the greatest time to be alive in the history of civilization.

      “Not a thing has changed on the mountain…”

  • James ONeil October 25, 2021, 9:32 AM

    Regarding the 2009 laughter of future men, I tend to agree with some old guy that commented there;
    “VANDERLEUN March 26, 2009
    I don’t know about anyone else, but I respectfully decline to go gently into that good night.”

  • jwm October 25, 2021, 11:55 AM

    Is there some synchronicity around 2009 today? The Baldwin clip, the post from Scipio with comments from both our esteemed host, and Fran Porretto. And this after dredging up a post from ’09 on my own corner. Anymore, I’m always on the lookout for another sure sign of the Apocalypse. Maybe three 9’s is just three 6’s all inverted, and we’re all doomed. Maybe I’m reading too much into it.


  • John the River October 25, 2021, 12:15 PM

    Automated Systems. First ones were those build on the simple voice based Automated Attendants. I put those in and did many of the voice recordings for the menu’s since customers liked my speaking voice. For about 5 years mine was the voice answering the line for Boston Pork and Veal; ” … for Pork press one, for Veal press two and for Chicken press three…” The call was transferred and end of story. Later the systems tried to get fancy, unfortunately.

    Later our company installed an automated warehouse management system for Installation, Repair and Sales. Problem was that the unknown programmer set it to justify it’s inventory at the end of the week; ask it if the warehouse had 15 widgets and if the warehouse had 25 it would say yes, next someone would ask if it had 20 widgets and again a yes… and so on. Always counting the same 25 widgets. The next morning five guys would be queued up at the warehouse desk looking for their widgets, and maybe the first two went away happy.
    They fixed that problem, and introduced three new ones. Good Times.

    The Papa Ginos pizza franchise is the most recent chain I’ve given up on trying to order food from. Not enough warm bodies at the other end of the line, so you can be struck in telephone hell for fifteen minutes. But of course what better time to inform and endear themselves to the customer then by filling that time you’re waiting with commercials for their product, separated by the company jingle and admonishments that you should have used their online web site instead (which I have tried and it truly bites) all at a Very. Loud. Volume.

    Never mind, just a old dog making nothing but useless noise.

  • Bunny October 25, 2021, 12:36 PM

    You know, I don’t find this stuff amusing anymore.

  • Anne October 25, 2021, 10:01 PM

    $2.00+ 1 California Navel Orange!! It seems that here in one of the finest RED states we are being unusually punished. The local Albertsons is charging $2.00 today for 1 Navel Orange. I promise you there is no way on this earth that that orange travelled from SO. California through the Port of Los Angeles!! Not even through the Port of Long Beach!!
    Makes the claim that the problem with the supply line is in fact tied to California’s newest mandate regarding trucks and their new emission requirements. Go to this link:

    You can then link to the EPA statement regarding the new agreement (signed a couple of years ago). MY thought is that the local trucker’s union(s) are having their say in the age old way unions have. How much are you being charged for Navel Oranges right now and what part of the country are you in — just a general geographic location is sufficient to make a good comparison!

  • David October 25, 2021, 11:04 PM


    lack of the usual social or ethical standards in an individual or group.
    “the theory that high-rise architecture leads to anomie in the residents”