Archive for the race Category

Idle Reflections as I Gaze Upon Your Shameless Depravity. #CPAC #GOP #Breitbart #Milo #FreeSpeech #HighGround

Posted in arguing with lovely people who are perfectly nice, arguing with lunatics, COMRADE TRUMP, current events, philosophy, politics, race on February 23, 2017 by furious buddha

As a Chicago baseball fan I have known my share of heartache, humiliation, and hope. Notice that I am neither a Cubs or Sox fan, but a Chicago baseball fan. I just love the game and don’t really care who wins; while this is somewhat like proclaiming yourself an agnostic while standing between Torquemada and Cotton Mather* I generally don’t get much grief for it. The thing is, I’m as likely to be at Wrigley as New Comiskey** and as a result I see exactly how both groups of fans feel about each other. When I go to New Comiskey I pass vendors selling as many variations on “Cubs suck” merchandise as they do Sox gear. You are literally as likely to hear someone shout something disparaging about the Cubs as they are to cheer on the Sox. Every third conversation seems to be about how terrible the Cubs, Wrigley Field, and the North Side are in general. Then when I go to Wrigley the only indication that there is another team in town is by looking at the scoreboard that lists all the teams in the National and American Leagues; the rivalry is incredibly one sided in that sense. Even in the year the Sox won the World Series, Sox fans could barely notice because of their all-consuming hatred of the Cubs; when the Cubs won, they had the largest peaceful secular gathering of human beings in history.

Conservatives are a lot like Sox fans; nothing makes them happy because they don’t want to be happy, they just want liberals (or Cubs fans) to be miserable. The closest they come to happiness is gloating in victory while drinking the sweet tears of the vanquished. This is why they’re so angry that “the left” is so energized; we haven’t provided them with nearly enough tears. Somewhere along the line they ceded the moral high ground so that they could embrace depraved and damaged people like Milo Yiannopoulos because he would say terrible things on their behalf. To be clear, although Milo is a hypocrite, it is not for playing the “victim card” and confessing that he is broken person but rather his incapacity to forgive others their brokenness. It should have been clear there was something desperately wrong with him even without knowing what he said regarding pedophilia and yet he was given a massive platform to spew madness and hate because that is what they wanted him to do. Liberals did not make conservatives love Milo.

I suppose that I take comfort that they still have some kind of sense of shame. At least they recognized that it would be better to drop Milo like a dog turd rather than to try and convince people that man on boy pedophilia is just another traditional religious practice that godless liberals were oppressing with our socialist nanny state. While I agree with the leadership of CPAC for recognizing that white supremacists have no place in mainstream political discourse, that does not mean that everyone at CPAC feels that way. From the Washington Post:

Spencer was stopped by JP Sheehan, a CPAC attendee wearing a black-and-gold Make America Great Again baseball cap.
“Praise kek!” said Sheehan, posing for a selfie with Spencer and repeating a meme that had been adopted by the alt-right. “He’s the coolest guy.”***

I am not accusing you of being a racist. I am not wagging my finger to lecture you. I am trying to point out that maybe it’s time to stop trying to piss people like me off or outrage me with how edgy you are and actually consider what it is going to take to effectively govern our great nation. Your current philosophy, my conservative comrades, is as nihilistic and solipsistic as that of a 19 year old suburban virgin who just discovered Ayn Rand. I have never found it easier to argue a conservative into running away like a frightened child; apparently my fellow Americans are demonstrating that to their Republican representatives across the country at the moment. Those are not paid protestors, my friends, those are citizens. All of that phony outrage you ginned up for the past eight years is going to haunt you now because you set a very low bar for behavior with a President who was gentlemanly, sophisticated, and who tried to work with you; now you’ve collaborated with racists and the Russians to put a dangerously incompetent headcase in the Oval Office while tripping over yourselves to dismantle the Federal Government and are scratching your head at the outrage confronting you. You don’t understand where it’s coming from because you don’t see anyone organizing it or paying for it. That’s because it’s actually We the People rising up.

.

*That was just for you, Kenny.
**I am never going to refer to it by that stupid name.
***JP Sheehan wouldn’t know what cool was if you put ice cubes in his asshole.

Turning the Other Cheek is Not a Suicide Pact

Posted in arguing with lovely people who are perfectly nice, COMRADE TRUMP, current events, god, philosophy, politics, race, religion on February 9, 2017 by furious buddha

Huck,

Your most recent comment regarding violence in the wake of Trump’s election deserved better than my initial glib response..

First of all, I’m guessing “the violence” you are talking about includes the four African Americans who have been charged with a hate crime for live streaming their kidnapping and abuse of a developmentally disabled white man. Right wing reaction to the crime is predictably hypocritical in the sense that they suddenly set a new threshold for “torture” that is decidedly different from when they are talking about the recipient of the abuse being black or brown; these conservatives also apparently now think that hate crime laws are a good idea. That aside, the attack was perpetrated by people so brutally stupid they broadcast themselves committing it. That they felt pride in humiliating and tormenting a person incapable of defending themselves speaks more shamefully of them than anything that could be written or spoken about them; they deserve the charges being brought against them and to be tried with the evidence weighed cooly in a courtroom. There is no moral question here, but then, unlike conservatives, I make no connection between these four lowlives and people of color in general, any more than I would claim that everyone from Saudi Arabia is a terrorist simply because a majority of the 9/11 attackers, plotters and financing came from there or that because white men are overwhelmingly likely to be the perpetrators of violence in churches I should think that every white man is potentially going to mass murder a Sunday School. The only people that actually want a “Race War” are white and the handful of black people who are as crazy as the four criminally insane ones mentioned above to think they could somehow win a “Race War”.. The population of African-Americans is barely above %10; there is no scenario where they win “Race War”. Trying to connect this crime to Black Lives Matter or otherwise blow it out of proportion is the willful misrepresentation of a fearmonger.

Then of course there is the sucker punching of Richard Spencer, the natty neoNazi everyone’s talking about. Punching Spencer only allows him to play the martyr which is something that conservatives love doing even more than they love accusing liberals of doing it. That’s why he’s standing in public places saying provocative things in front of a camera; he is trying to create a narrative where the barbaric liberals are assaulting the clean cut white guy who is calmly talking into the camera. The Nazis used similar tactics, but the same could be said for a lot of things going on right now. So I am certainly against violence in this case as well. The guy who hit Richard Spencer is Not Helping, and the four psychopaths above certain didn’t do anyone any kind of good.

Violence is wrong, mostly.
Violence is wrong always in a hypothetical sense.
But specifically is where the world happens.

Was Lincoln wrong to use violence to preserve the Union?
Was Roosevelt wrong to pursue war against the Nazis?
Was Truman wrong to drop the atomic bomb?

Is it wrong to use violence to prevent barbaric atrocity?
Would it have been wrong to allow UN forces in Rwanda to use violence in an effort to stop the genocide?

Is it wrong to respond to violence perpetrated by a foreign power upon one’s nation?
Would it have been right to invade Saudi Arabia as opposed to Iraq after 9/11?

Gandhi faced a civilized oppressor in the British Empire that could be shamed by nonviolence into taking just action; how long would Gandhi’s campaign have lasted if the Nazis had been in control of India?

Should we admire the Vichy Government for peacefully collaborating with the Nazis and condemn the French Resistance as a pack of murderous terrorists?

My faith declares that it is the peacemakers who are blessed which is a rather straightforward precept that is easy to comprehend if not easily achieved. But as a general principle it makes sense.

Then there is the admonition to turn the other cheek. This is a more complicated idea that can actually seem insane if taken literally. On the other hand, the One who bade us to do so allowed Himself to be scourged and crucified rather than compromise His essential integrity. So does that mean that we should allow innocents, our loved ones, and ourselves be butchered by barbarians?

Here’s how I interpret turning the other cheek. I will not be provoked into violence but neither do I cower. I present my other cheek to demonstrate that I do not fear violence. I practice Judo. I can take a punch. My principle is to subdue a violent person with the minimal amount of necessary violence. I respond to rage with calm,  and I prevail because I am not trying defeat anyone or prove my superiority; my conditions for a “win” is de-escalation. Pacifism is scoffed at by weaklings who puff themselves up with macho bravado and mistake aggression for masculinity; making peace is bloody difficult and sometimes you have to use your hands and get dirty.

White supremacists have infiltrated police departments across the US and the new Attorney General of the US once said he would be ok with the Klan except that some of them smoked weed. The only person the President of the United States has anything nice to say about is Vladimir Putin, a murderous tyrant whom he admires for his strength. His chief advisor is an anti-Semite who believes an existential war with China and Islam are inevitable and that our society needs a trial by fire; he has taken actions that can only be rationally interpreted in the worst possible way.

Turning the other cheek is not a suicide pact.

 

The AntiKing

Posted in arguing with lovely people who are perfectly nice, arguing with lunatics, COMRADE TRUMP, current events, politics, race on January 19, 2017 by furious buddha
It is not possible for me to express a saccharine sentiment about Doctor King today (I started this on Monday), so if you are one of the special snowflakes who needs a trigger warning before hearing a traumatic truth about the political choices you made, consider this your last chance to avoid getting your feelings hurt.
Look away. Look away. Look away.
One of my academic fields was African-American History, which is essentially American history that you weren’t taught in school. I studied Classical and conventional contemporary history before it, so I approached the subject with a sense of context. I ended up basically re-learning American and World history through the lens of the African perspective. It was extremely broadening and clarifying in terms of resolving the big picture for me.

It is that perspective that troubles me so mightily today.

It is very important today to remember how we treated Dr. King when he was among us. He was considered such a threat that the FBI conspired to defame Doctor King as sexually debauched and a Russian agent. A tremendous amount of effort was spent to discredit him; nothing was spent to protect him. When he came to Chicago, one of us hit him with a brick. He was despised with a raging hatred because white people believed he was going to lead a race war against them; regardless of how he preached non-violence, they could not imagine a situation other than dominance and repression; they could not comprehend the co-existence he dreamed of. Many of those people are alive and still voting today; the person who threw the brick could be in their 60’s or 70’s now.

The lens of African American history showed me that the path of progress is not straight; many times times progress has been made and painfully lost. After the Civil War there was a decade of reconstruction in the South during which black men could vote and hold office. Reconstruction era rights were enforced by the federal government; during this period more schools, hospitals, and roads were built in the South than at any other time. Still, whites chafed at seeing blacks in positions of authority and before long there was coup in North Carolina; blacks and whites who had been working together were killed or fled from the mob. The federal government did nothing. Reconstruction had become “Restoration” and in the restoration of white male supremacy (Local papers referred to the murderous riot as “White Men’s Day”). “Jim Crow” laws fell into place and the progress of Reconstruction was obliterated. Doctor King led a movement nearly sixty years later that restored and enshrined the progress lost after Reconstruction.

If I’ve said it once I’ve said it a thousand times,
history doesn’t repeat, it rhymes,
then somebody told me that’s one of Twain’s lines
but he ain’t here, so now it’s mine

We are living in a moment very much like the beginning of the Restoration Era. When Newt Gingrich chortles about undoing everything Obama accomplished it is an echo of the men who enacted Jim Crow; in the eyes of those screaming about “making America great again” are reflections of segregation. There are very few people with living memory of the so-called “Tulsa Race Riot” of 1921, which was when the neighborhood of Greenwood, then the wealthiest African-American community in the country, was burned to the ground by rampaging whites. Over 300 people were killed and 35 square blocks were destroyed. It was such an effective act of terror that nobody black or white spoke of it for years. The silence was so thorough that researchers found the microfilm record of the Tulsa Tribune for that day had been tampered with; many people had recalled that it had announced a lynching of a young black man accused of rape (the evidence as presented in the news accounts was nonsense). They also recalled that the police and national guard participated on the side of the rioters. That was 94 years ago when my grandmother was a year old infant.

You can see the eyes of bigots fill with disgusted rage when they hear the phrase “Black Lives Matter”; uttering it can be a litmus test. Once upon a time the phrase “Black is Beautiful” could accomplish the same thing. While people will now sputter about the imagined and alleged offenses of the movement associated with the phrase, the rage started immediately when the phrase was coined before there were any protests associated with it. This was because the phrase itself does not allow whites to ignore it and to deny it is to confront the ugliest part of one’s self, which people don’t like to be reminded of. That’s why so many conservatives will talk about how racism is over even as they are embracing openly white supremacist candidates, ideas and policies. When they accuse people like myself of succumbing to “white guilt” they are projecting their own guilt outwards; I don’t feel any guilt about being white. I have read the source materials and know what I’m talking about; it would be as silly to fault myself for being white as it would be to fault someone for being black. Seeing injustice and trying to address it nothing to feel guilty about; pretending injustice isn’t happening and faulting people for trying to make the world a better place is what is shameful. Trump is the AntiKing; he seeks to undo not merely the Obama Presidency but everything back to Restoration.
I’m sitting here on the night of January 19th and I am more convinced than ever that Donald Trump stole the election with the help of Vladimir Putin.. The evidence keeps piling up and literally everything Trump has said and done since the election has increased my certainty that very dark deals have been made. Trump began his political career by demanding that the current president show is birth certificate and insinuating that he was an agent of radical Muslim terrorists. Trump literally has yet to show his taxes and there is mounting evidence that he collaborated with a hostile foreign power to become president. When Trump talks about his enemies, he is talking about other Americans. He regularly praises Putin and is enacting a foreign policy that looks like the Russian tyrants wish list. By this time tomorrow he will be able to shut down every American intelligence agency investigation into his high crimes.
This is not normal. This is not right. This is not a television show that you are watching.
The United States of America is facing an existential crisis that is without parallel. The rigid and cynical thinking of conservatives has made them particularly susceptible to propaganda and laughably easy to manipulate. Their self-serving flip on Russia is inexcusably craven and traitorous; they are selling out their nation for their political party. They are no longer the party of Reagan. They are the party of Putin. And may God have mercy on their souls. I will not cooperate or collaborate with what I consider to be an illegitimate Presidency. I will not be satisfied until the guilty are brought to justice and the rightful authority of the American people is restored to our Republic.
God bless the United States of America.
Winston Delagdo
January  16-19, 2017

Comrade Trump’s New Decency

Posted in arguing with lovely people who are perfectly nice, arguing with lunatics, current events, politics, pop culture, race, Star Wars IV.5 Flight of the Rebels, teh internets on November 23, 2016 by furious buddha

Huck,

If what that woman does in that video to that child constitutes child abuse, then someone needs to call the police on Jimmy Kimmel because he has victimized thousands of kids over the years. While I am not a fan of this mother’s parenting technique or Jimmy’s sadistic notion of a joke (and I certainly don’t agree with videotaping and posting any of these humiliating moments), it doesn’t constitute child abuse. I know how the terrible damage we do to children echoes across decades and centuries which is why I will not trivialize child abuse by equating it to what that woman did. I can disagree with what she is doing and still not categorize it as child abuse; there is a difference between a moment of shitty parenting and child abuse, and that woman is on the shitty end of the stick. Conservative arguments for religious liberty permit actual child abuse to be ignored by the law as well as for neglect when a parent doesn’t believe in basic medical care; I find the pearl clutching at this woman’s minor league bullying to be overwrought.

Huck, I am a working class white person and I can tell you that often we can be a bunch of anti-intellectual racists and xenophobic homophobes who are ignorant crybabies that resent anyone we perceive to be smarter than we are; we stubbornly won’t dream of lifting ourselves higher because we only want to drag everything down to our level. We continue to vote for candidates who embrace the policies that have annihilated the economies of our towns and states because cheap appeals to our bigotry work better than a reasoned argument on us. We are dupes, chumps, and suckers when we are greedy, lazy, and small-minded. Donald Trump is lying to coal workers about getting their jobs back. I’m telling the truth. Who is being disrespectful to the white working class?

***********************************************************************

The new episode of the Dollop is very timely.

Sitting Bull was killed at Standing Rock by officers sent to arrest him. They were arresting him because they feared he was going to join the Ghost Dance Movement. It is the week of Thanksgiving and members of the Sioux Nation were attacked with tear gas and water cannons in below freezing temperatures by officers while protesting an oil pipeline being installed across their land and across the Missouri River within a mile of the Standing Rock Reservation.

**********************************************************************

Huck, I’m watching you call auntiestevi and myself “smug”. I get your point but there’s nothing auntiestevi is saying that is smug unless you count her tone of “I am informed and confident based on my rational assessment of objective fact” as being smug. Donald Trump was elected by the uneducated voters that he said he loved. What auntiestevi said was not a smug assertion of superiority but rather an accurate description of what happened. Telling someone they are being conned is not an act of smugness; there is certainly no gloating here by either of us. I was surprised that “smug” was not one of Gingrich’s contrasting words; it would be a fine addition to that list.

And this is what I mean about being crybabies, for God’s sake. Conservatives whine about “Political Correctness” in G-Major with an E in the bass, when that “Political Correctness” is really nothing more than Treating Others With Respect; they weep and moan that liberals are so mean to them just because they want to call people ugly names.

The reason this is filed under arguing with lunatics is because… …well, that’s what one does on teh internets.  If you review some of my most viewed posts it should become quite clear why I started including the arguing with lunatics category which is no more than a garment I’ve held up; you’re deciding if it’s cut to your fit. However, in the interest of goodwill and brotherhood I have added another category to the Teahouse Menu.

The Teahouse is my fortress of reason where there is no compromise of standards, only parley with those outside the moat. Comrade Trump’s New Decency will not hold sway within these walls as long as I have the strength to swing Sarcasticus.
He does not get points for flip flopping on his promise to jail Hillary because the promise itself was an egregious violation of decency and democracy; it’s the kind of thing third world dictators threaten to do.
His disavowal of the alt-right is absurd while Steve Bannon is his chief of staff and Jeff Sessions is his nominee for Attorney General. Words clearly have no meaning for Mr. Trump; only actions have any meaning and his actions thus far speak very clearly. The Nazis are exulting for a reason.

We are in an Imperials or Rebel Alliance moment here and for me there is no choice; Princess Leia stored data on private server. The DNC is not perfect by a longshot but they are all that the Republic has left.

princess-leia-stores-data-on-a-private-server

Pictured: Princess Leia storing data on a private server.

Comrade Trump’s Trolls Want Your Soul

Posted in arguing with lunatics, current events, race on November 20, 2016 by furious buddha

One of the clues that fascists are taking over is that when they win they get even more angrily violent. Digby wrote an excellent essay examining this phenomenon and her explanation is chillingly accurate; her quotation of Abraham Lincoln is particularly relevant and I include here in full:

This, and this only: cease to call slavery wrong, and join them in calling it right. And this must be done thoroughly — done in acts as well as in words. Silence will not be tolerated — we must place ourselves avowedly with them. Senator Douglas’ new sedition law must be enacted and enforced, suppressing all declarations that slavery is wrong, whether made in politics, in presses, in pulpits, or in private. We must arrest and return their fugitive slaves with greedy pleasure. We must pull down our Free State constitutions. The whole atmosphere must be disinfected from all taint of opposition to slavery, before they will cease to believe that all their troubles proceed from us.

Until we agree with the goblins in their heads they will not be satisfied.

Huck, there is no end to the perfidy and deceit in our politics but I will not be part of any charade where we pretend there is some kind of equanimity between the two parties at this moment. Ignoring the influence of white nationalists in the White House and the role that racism is playing in our politics is something I am simply incapable of in the same way that I would have difficulty ignoring rats eating my face.

And if you want to call that “child abuse” let’s talk about Mike Huckabee and that sister diddling Duggar creep. And the loss of integrity by our media only serves Trump and his ilk.
Comrade Trump is preparing for a “victory tour” which is totally a normal thing that Presidents do, right?

Digby left us with a little bit more of what Lincoln had to say in the face of the implacable madness of his day;

Neither let us be slandered from our duty by false accusations against us, nor frightened from it by menaces of destruction to the Government nor of dungeons to ourselves. Let us have faith that right makes might, and in that faith, let us, to the end, dare to do our duty as we understand it.

Amen, Abe.

WD

Comrade Trump’s Thugs.

Posted in arguing with lunatics, current events, politics, race on November 15, 2016 by furious buddha

Huck,

First of all it is likely that the “Rape Melania” sign was a dirty trick by a “deplorable” trying to make those protesting Trump look bad (please note that I am using the exact same source you did for the original story); regardless, a single sign held up by a single angry asshole does not a movement make. It certainly does not justify any equivalency between Trump and his supporters and those who oppose him. And really, if you want to get into picking individuals who suck, even if that asshole with the sign was an actual Democrat he’s no worse than this guy. Or this one. Or the sweethearts who do these things.

Likewise, angry children burning the flag are nothing to get worked up about; a flag is a bolt of cloth and what it represents cannot be desecrated by them. It does not please me that they do it and I would prefer that if they want to use the flag in protest they fly it upside down, signalling distress, which is far more appropriate than burning the flag. But then, if Trump had lost the Electoral College and had over a million more votes than HRC I’m sure his supporters would have demonstrated calm restraint and understanding.

And I’m not kidding about distress.
Russia Today, Huck? Seriously? How would Ronald Reagan feel about an American conservative using a Russian propaganda source in a political discussion? It’s like Invasion of the Body Snatchers. Why should anyone care about George Soros when American Conservatives are being taken in by a plot so ridiculous and obvious that the John Birch Society would have thought it cartoonish? So what if some college kids are protesting on a billionaire’s dime? Our national security is as stake.

Vladimir Putin’s Russia is the Soviet Union 2.0 and they just not only interfered in our Presidential election, but they bragged about it after applauding the result. The President Elect has not released his tax returns and there is reason to believe that he is heavily leveraged  by Russian oligarchs. One of his campaign managers was considered a security risk for his Russian connections. There’s a server in Trump Tower that talks to a Russian bank.

There are so many unacceptable things about Trump that it is dazzling; he has put white nationalism over country and found new ways to deepen the divides between Americans. I’m from Chicago, Huck. I know once you see the flash of metal you have to think tactically. There is no purity at the DNC but I would rather cast my lot with that ship of fools than the pack of thugs heading for the White House.

WD

 

Comrade Trump’s Locusts

Posted in arguing with lunatics, current events, days in the life, philosophy, politics, race, religion on November 11, 2016 by furious buddha

I suppose the thing that makes most people nervous is that he will do the things he said he would do, even the contrary and nonsensical ones.

I suppose what makes me nervous is that nobody has any idea what he’s going to do, including him. He is going to become a president with unprecedented power, thanks to the majorities he brought into Congress; unless Obama does a recess appointment of Merrick Garland he is going to be holding onto a Supreme Court nominee from the get go. I suppose what makes me nervous is that he has demonstrated the stability of the Joker and the moral compass of Lex Luthor and he is going to be handed real, true temporal power over us all.

I suppose people are being either willfully stupid or are spectacularly naive when they say he’s going to be fine because in the past 36 hours he hasn’t grabbed anyone’s pussy or mockingly imitated someone with cerebral palsy. They seem to think the last seventy years of his life was just an elaborate act to craft the persona of a narcissist obsessed with fame and power who treated other people as objects and whose idea of business savvy was often simply fraud by another name; the real man is wise and sober of judgement, they assure us with fervent serenity. However, they are not calm; their panic causes them to freeze in the presence of a predator.

It is Veterans Day and the President Elect is a draft dodger who says he felt like he was in the military because he went to Exeter and compared avoiding catching an sexually transmitted disease to serving in Vietnam. He said of a POW who spent six years being tortured by the Vietcong that he preferred soldiers who don’t get caught. As of a few months ago he didn’t even know what a Gold Star family was while he was in the middle of denigrating one. He calls our generals “idiots” while demonstrating the same grasp of military tactics as a fifteen year old playing Risk. He has an extremely suspicious relationship with Russia that he has lied about. Now he is the Commander in Chief of our armed forces.

I have been warning for years about the Jezekiah Grasshoppers but now they have swarmed into Trump’s Locusts. The Klan is on the march and the Nazis are wanking themselves bloody. Kenny, you should join and I’m going to try to figure out the way I can be most effective; we have a large circle of quiet underachievers that we need to awaken, embolden, and activate for duty. We are not in the future, we are in the present our entire lives have been preparing us for.