I Don’t Know Who The Fed Is Working For, But It Ain’t You And Me

I’m no economist. But economics seems to be one of those fields that you can be trained in for years and years and still not know what the fuck is going on. Not even a savvy investment giant like Warren Buffett can tell which way the wind is blowing all the time. Economics is a guessing game, judging by the amount of divergent opinions one can help themselves to in the news on a daily basis.

So the field is open for a layperson like myself to learn the fundamentals. But even the “laws” of supply and demand elude people interested in the subject. Some people think that is the end of the discussion, that all economic activity comes down to that raw tension between those two concepts. Their relationship is definitely very much a thing and weighs hard on all economic discussions, but it is not the end of them. What I have learned so far is that there are several forms of market warp that transcends the simplicity of laissez- faire notions of how money moves.

Peoples’ memories and attention spans being shit as they are, they often don’t remember events that changed the face of history. Just for an easy example, Trumpers like to point out the price of gas when he was president as compared to what it was this summer while Biden presided. Now of course this is dumb on its face because of the easily understood fact that the president does not really control gas prices. There are things that can be done, like releasing oil from our strategic reserve, employing gas tax holidays, and diplomacy with oil-producing nations. But most of that will not bring significant results that people are clamoring for. Stupid people think that presidents are like CEOs, where everything that goes wrong on their shift is attributable to them. But there’s this little thing called current events, and a president would have to have a crystal ball to head them off. History has to run through the course of a presidency, and to truly understand the efficacy or failure of a presidency we must know what happened during it, looking at phenomena that haven’t got a thing to do with who sits in the Oval Office.

So anyway, why was gas so cheap during Trump? Well, let me get right to it. It’s the prime mover of every calamity we have had and are continuing to have.

COVID-19.

If you don’t understand what the epidemic did to the economy, you have shit for brains and should shut up on the subject of economics for the last three years or so.

We literally didn’t leave the house for a year and a half. Businesses were destroyed. Supply chains mangled. Workers laid off. Oil actually traded in the negative, which technically meant we were running out of places to put the oil that no one needed and were on the verge of giving it away. We were worried about how we were going to wipe our ass. It took Trump begging the Saudis to shut their taps off to keep American producers afloat.

An event like this only comes perhaps once a century. It changes everything, and sometimes it just doesn’t matter who is the unfortunate chump in office is when they do occur. Mind you, Trump’s response to COVID was as bad a response as could be imagined, first denying the danger for months and then hawking quack treatments for people who were encouraged to have vaccine hysteria.

By the time Biden entered office, America was back at play, footloose and fancy free. Mask restrictions were done away with, vaccine proof was no longer needed to do certain things and we were off to the races. Demand skyrocketed.

But supply did not. A good chunk of manufacturing is coming from China, who has a zero COVID policy and if they catch a whiff of a breakout they literally go on lockdown. This would and still is causing a crimp in our supply capabilities. Oil company investors, who had their profits pared down seriously by COVID, went on a wild greed spree this summer, refusing to up production to meet the demand, citing a labor shortage, drill parts shortage and the events in Russia and Ukraine. Some of that may have been true-but much of the rise in price in oil was partly attributable to stock buybacks and and insistence on not growing to maximize the barrel price.

So what happens when too much money is chasing too few goods because supply cannot meet demand?

Inflation. It’s as natural as a newborn. Now during COVID under Trump, we printed seven trillion dollars to keep the economy alive. Another two trillion was printed in the first months of the Biden administration. Now those seven trillion under Trump had no effect on inflation. The Fed kept rates at near zero, allowing cheap money to flow wherever it needed to. Once again, it is stupid people who don’t understand that debt is not tied to inflation in a sophisticated economy like ours. Had this been true, we’d be like Argentina since we’re already 23 trillion in the hole and debt to GDP is almost 100%. We absolutely had to borrow that money to just keep basic services going. Some of it went to bad places but on the whole it was necessary debt, which some nitwits cannot tell from bad debt. But anyway, America is taking risks and are back in society, buying what they want. But they’ve noticed big time that what they want is going up in price quite a bit.

What’s the real problem? Did we overdo quantitative easing? Or is this inflation just a function of low supply and high demand? Or do we have yet more greed coming from monopolistic elements within the economy? Either way, Fed Chairman Jerome Powell thinks he has the answer. He’s gearing up for several aggressive interest rate hikes to combat inflation. People I have been reading say he’s going to crash the economy if he keeps it up, and that may be his plan-which sounds insane for a society that just got let loose into the marketplace to buy, buy and buy. Yes, some tightening is probably necessary. Some. But not recession-causing tightening. Apparently Powell doesn’t think the market has the know how to heal itself, and is going to instead contract us into a manageable size, where wages are lower as well as prices. This is madness. COVID-19 warp has shit to do with monetary policy. Those trillions were on the books and they could have stayed there a bit more while we got on with business. Once again, incremental adjustments to the interest rates make sense, but not these ham fisted moves Powell is making. He’s not going to squeeze inflation out of the economy if he is not taking into account what is causing it.

It’s not the balance sheet, folks. It’s the bug. And if Jerome Powell thinks he’s doing us a favor by making the cost of of money expensive and halt this economy’s gains, he doesn’t understand the American consumer nor the pandemic. Give America a minute to actually be a free market. Or to be free, period.

You Can Google Yourself Into Staying Current. You Cannot Google Yourself Into Expertise.

The Internet is such a fucked up thing, a true paradox. It is the largest repository of information on the planet. You would think this a good thing…yet the people who use it seem to be getting dumber.

Let’s talk a little bit about people who think that when they look for information on the Internet, they are performing “research”.

You know these people. They are legion. They are all around you, believing some of the most insane shit you can dream up. Not knowing much about how the real world works, they construct fantasy worlds based on ignorant, paranoid biases they have. They have consumed so much information confirming them, that they actually see themselves as authorities on a matter. And they’re not, because they aren’t trained to be one. Yet every fucking person these days always has something to say about everything. It’s tiring. I’m sorry, but rare is the true polymath.

Let’s be clear: Experts are the only people who should be conducting any sort of “research”. And many of them constrain their expertise to one subject, as any knowledge base can be ridiculously complicated and is in constant evolution.

Most of us drones can read a book and maybe really digest a fourth of it. Even less will be able to spit out the contents of what they read to a fellow human. Shit, sometimes I can’t say anything about a TV show I just watched. Hardly any of us commoners are doing any structured “learning”. The best of us can merely familiarize ourselves with a subject. So it is with the Internet. We can read all we like and still not know a whole lot. But then we get super offended when all of our “research” gets questioned.

That’s not the way to wisdom. Having your beliefs challenged is really the only way to actually “learn”. In other words, looking for what might be wrong about what you think you know is the key to possibly knowing anything at all. That requires a bit of humility most people do not possess, though, especially if you are dealing with someone who thinks that just because they have access to the biggest journal/encyclopedia in existence it makes them somehow learned.

I have a bachelor’s degree in sociology. The theory is painful to comb through, and that is a lot of what you have to get through to make it past your sophomore year. A favorite professor of mine gave up the goods on why we needed to dig up fossils like Emile Durkheim. “It’s really just to torture you the way we were tortured.” I believed her. You also get introduced to the world of statistics, which I actually found fun. Some of my fellow classmates were fucking insufferable, though; like I had this one class in stats where the textbook was filled end to end with studies. Now, this book’s purpose, from what I could tell was to help us learn how studies are structured, to immerse us in the world of what we can learn from surveys and data. Yet for some reason, the class devolved into “how can we pick apart this study and declare it invalid?” Students got hung up on dumb shit like sample size. If it was deemed not high enough (it was always an arbitrary number that varied from student to student), it was a bad study. That’s not how this works, though. You can sample or plot 20 points and get a mean that suggests a correlation in one direction or another. Yes, you can sample 40 and be more accurate, but it’s really the difference between say, 90% certainty and 95%. There’s tests you can perform that give you confidence values. What I’m getting at is that the picture is the same, it’s just slightly blurrier when you work with less data.

Anyway, four years is what I survived. Did that mean I was well-educated? Was I a sociologist, or one in training? Looking back, I’d have to say no. Nowadays, bachelor degrees are not held in high esteem by employers. Everyone wants the grinders who stick with shit for eight to twelve years. I wasn’t able to do that for several reasons, but one was that I don’t think I could have bullshitted my way through graduate level work. I didn’t want to anyway. Sociology could be fun and fascinating, but I was never destined to be an expert in it.

I’m getting a little sidetracked, but the point was is that real education takes place in educational institutions, and real expertise gets conducted by experts. Reading the Internet for the average schmo should be like reading the morning paper-oh, here’s some interesting news, hey that’s a cool subject, hm, I didn’t know that, let me find out more, wow, they did what? Basically, keep the fuck up. Be active when it is necessary. That is your civic responsibility, nothing more. Now it’s a little rough out there, because major media gatekeeps for or is outright owned or manipulated by the moneyed and the powerful. But there’s a lot of people doing journalism for journalism’s sake. Good stories and portals are out there, and real journalists have been telling inconvenient truths. Did what you read make you mad? Excellent. Did it change your mind? Awesome. Did it add perspective to something you are interested in? I’m all for it.

This “research” epidemic, however, is for fools. It’s just ducky to Google or Wikipedia a subject you just encountered, I encourage that behavior. What is not sensible is consuming a lot of information/bullshit on a topic you aren’t an expert in. You can easily be misinformed, for one thing, if you don’t know how to check your sources. That is something that typically an expert would know how to do. And confirmation bias, as far as I can tell, is habitual in this fucking species. Starting with a conclusion is absurdly common. I think X is happening, and since I have a giant library at my fingertips, there’s a good chance I can definitely find evidence for X being true. Even science itself is guilty of this.

I dunno. Maybe some people are just raised berserk, and it’s best to leave them be if we are creatures of mercy. But I grow weary of it. For me, everything I “know” is in a state of flux. Does that bother me? Honestly, no, it doesn’t. There are things about this objective reality we will never figure out. (Then again, I haven’t tried DMT). It’s cool, that’s what it means to live, especially as a human. Uncertainty is part of the package of survival. “Research” and “figuring things out” isn’t going to make me feel existentially better.

They say everyone needs something to believe in. Maybe. And I suppose in our virtual world of connectivity, that’s easier than ever to find. In that sense, the Internet peddles millions of faiths. We want so badly to be special, we want to know we are part of the Correct, that we are In. Maybe in our atomized society this is all we can do anymore to remain cohesive, share our ridiculous faiths through an invisible ether. I’m out of answers.

Perhaps know yourself first before you go knowing anything else. I think some wise weirdo advised this a long, long time ago. I think he was killed for giving it to people.

You May Want To Take Note Of What You Were Doing Today

Here at the seminary, we try as hard as we can to mark momentous occasions for posterity’s sake. Well, that’s kind of a lie. I’m lazy as hell and that’s one of the reasons why this blog never went anywhere.

Last night, in bed bathed in the blue-light adjusted glow of my phone, I found out that The Washington Post got a motherfucker of a scoop.

Classified documents relating to nuclear weapons were among the items FBI agents sought in a search of former president Donald Trump’s Florida residence on Monday, according to people familiar with the investigation.

The people who described some of the material that agents were seeking spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss an ongoing investigation. They did not offer additional details about what type of information the agents were seeking, including whether it involved weapons belonging to the United States or some other nation.

Today, there will be an avalanche of discussion about this. Now Trump tried to get out in front of this story, threatening to release the copy of the search warrant to show that there was nothing to here to see, folks. Later this afternoon, Merrick Garland may beat him to it, having made a motion to unseal the warrant so we don’t have to wait on Trump to find out what this fat orange fascist wannabe cocksucker has been up to.

Republican social media accounts, with a few exceptions, have reportedly gone dark on this matter. If indeed Trump is the magnitude of criminal he appears to be, that stink will be all over their candidacy. Granted, a great deal of Republicans will no doubt spin this as a conspiracy, and the ever faithful MAGA crowd will still show up in droves for those reps on Election Day.

Perhaps a small percentage will have a moment of clarity, wondering or finally realizing what a fucking mark they have been for one of the most accomplished con men in American history. That is the only good news that can come out of the story of a former president allegedly caught hiding nuclear secrets.

Loose Lips Sink Ships-The Closing Democratic Window Of Discourse

“Shut up, be happy”-Jello Biafra

It’s taken me a little while to figure out in which “skin” I belong in as far as left of center politics goes. There are many hashmarks between say, moderate and communist. You can be a moderate, a liberal, a progressive, a social democrat, a democratic socialist, a socialist, a libertarian socialist, all the way to communist. I’m sure I’ve missed some.

I have done some thinking about all these waypoints along the left side of the axis. I have found that progressive suits me best. I’m not looking to overthrow the capitalist system (not yet at least). I am searching for fairness in this one. I am searching for forward movement, the continual betterment of the common man’s condition.

There’s 101 of us in the federal government. I hate to break it to the moderates, but we are the future of the party. The young generations will sweep status quo candidates from office in due time. I will probably help them, if I see we can win.

Now there are definitely problems as we transition to new generations of voters. The youngest are angry, confused, scared and think the system doesn’t care about them. Who can blame them? To them, the old guard just sits back, tells them to be quiet, watch the planet burn, see the cost of living skyrocket so high that they can’t see a way to live independently, see corporations and the filthy rich take over every facet of life with their money, witness a culture where they have to worry about being shot at any given place and time, observe militarized police who will beat you if you assemble improperly, worry about wars and international beefs we may not have an existential stake in, and see civil and constitutional rights disappearing because of an out of control white christian authoritarian minority…you’re all reading the news. I could go on.

I have criticized the Do Something mentality in the past, but the more I learn the more I see why it exists.

They say that perception is reality. While that maxim is flawed, it does mean that leadership must pick up its tin ear and listen to the concerns of its potential constituents. It is especially important now seeing as how we Democrats are on track to lose the House and we’ll be needing the lefty vote and the young vote to get to the place where we can spring into action and remove this cursed filibuster, expand that wreck of a Court, and legislate back the rights we’ve lost over the past ten years.

So it really doesn’t make much difference at this point to continue to list the positive things that Joe Biden has done, of which there are many. He has done what has needed doing to repair the damage done by Trump. For that, we should all be grateful. But unfortunately, politics and time moves on and has a “but what are you doing now” and a “what are you going to do” vibe running through it, and now that the honeymoon is long over, the Biden administration and other leadership are short on ideas and even shorter on enthusiasm. Everyone is asking the administration and other Democrats questions about what it can or will do about this or that. And we often get no good answer. The brilliant flak-catcher Jen Psaki is gone, leaving the White House short on professional ass coverage. The president is not taking questions from a querulous press and when he does, he’s grumpy about being challenged. All we get are angry Biden apologists teeming on social media, and those apologists don’t want you to speak a single ill word about the president or the party.

This will not fly. No matter how hard you tell Democratic Biden critics/questioners to shut up, it will not go away. This is not the Republican Party; we don’t have a hive mind. We are a coalition of diverse thinking groups, and those groups are increasingly at odds with each other. And we need to work together, not hiss and spit. That is how Republicans win. Moderate Democrats will have to give air to the more left element’s grievances, and the more left among us will have to understand better our limitations. We need to talk, not throw slime. Share wisdom. Exchange knowledge. It will make us much stronger if we have a healthy dialectic.

Discourse should be acceptable within our ranks. I don’t like the idea that questioning things is bad for the party. There’s something…undemocratic about it.

Biden must give succor to both wings. That is part of his job description, keep the party together. Especially now that democracy itself is on the ballot.

This post basically evolved from my increasing irritation with the mass blowoff of the more left wing of the party. And that blowoff is translating into poll outcomes like this:

I was repeatedly told not to share that poll because it would help depress turnout and lose us the ’22 election. I simply thought the numbers were eyebrow-raising to say the least. But I am also repeatedly being told I have some sort of “agenda” (a paranoid Republican babbleword), accused of helping Republicans (or in some cases, being one) if I even so much as acknowledge fucking reality. Sorry. I will call balls and fucking strikes like I see them. If we tell ourselves and others lies about the current efficacy of the administration we risk our integrity. That poll ain’t my fault. The truth is still out there whether I share it or not.

There was also this stupid statement from the White House recently:

Oh, so the people who marched and protested and screamed for answers to a severe crisis are “activists”? This is the kind of bullshit that chafes voters. This rhetoric will lose Democrats more votes than any poll. Does anyone know what the mainstream even stands for at this juncture? If our “activist” values aren’t theirs, what business do they have calling themselves part of The People’s Party? What intrinsic good is there in just being the Not-Republican Party?

That’s just taking the slow train to hell instead of the express. I find this increasingly unacceptable, and avoidable.

We can stop blaming “the media” right about now and making up screwy conspiracies about their aims. Again, that’s another dumb Republican idea that we’ve somehow assimilated into our yaksacks. We’re cutting our own throats with the message (or lack of one), not the coverage. Papers of record are awful right now, but not for the reasons we think. Personally, I’d rather read the muckrakers who don’t give a good god damn what either party thinks. Generally, they don’t shade the truth.

To a great degree, this next election is an all hands on deck moment and it’s important to understand that Republicans have gamed ’22 and made a circus of the electoral system. I am working hard personally to GOTV in my county and make sure as many Democrats as possible show up to vote. I run media on several social platforms for the party and maintain the county website. I will soon be tasked with phonebanking and canvassing. However, what I share as a private citizen with my followers that I find interesting is my business and you can fuck off if you don’t like it. Last time I checked, that account is mine, not the Democratic Party’s. I barely have 1100 followers. I have no influence. Go crawl up David Hogg’s ass, who, while perhaps well-intentioned, has literally discouraged people from voting and donating to the party. Millions of people see him online daily. He’s a spokesperson for the young whether he knows it or not and he has to get smarter quickly.

Let’s just keep the conversation and the reality free and flowing. Telling people to be quiet will not make more Democratic voters, nor will sharing uncomfortable truths make less. It will just make people think and consider, and we need that more than ever in America.

And be fucking polite out there. I am still learning this one myself, but if you know something that someone else doesn’t, share it. Don’t be a dick. Save that shit for Republicans.

Next We’ll Be Revisiting Fluoridated Water-Tucker Carlson Is An Insane Conspiracy-Spewing Asshole

I’ve taken quite a vacation from watching Tucker Carlson. His show has devolved in a way I could never imagine. Used to be a time when, however wrong he was, he’d have guests on to have a contentious fight with. I don’t think anyone remotely credible wants to go on his show anymore, though. Now it’s all just hair-on-fire end of civilization commentary that probably only serves to scare old white folks.

Today, let’s highlight a couple of his latest conspiracies. This would be twice now in a span of perhaps a month that suggests that the Biden administration is trying to use drugs or the non-use of them to “control” the population, a familiar Tucker refrain with about zero basis in fact. Here’s Tucker saying that nicotine users have more mental acuity (debatable) and therefore a ban on Juuls is going to make men soft and stupid:

Not long after, he’s howling on a Brazilian beach about how government and corporations don’t want people to have families because they are still trying to help women obtain safe abortions and that the government might put SSRIs in the water supply to keep people happy:

Yes. That’s airing on a major cable “news network”. Not to mention that it’s one of the most popular shows on television. It’s no wonder this country is going to the dogs if this is in the diet.

UPDATE: More drug talk from Tucker. He’s alleging that school “counselors” are handing out “psychotropic” drugs all over the country. This is patent bullshit of course, as is the use of a scare word that most people don’t know. Then he mentions SSRIs again. I have news for Tucker; it’s not 1985 anymore; there’s SNRIs, tricyclics, tetracyclics, typical, atypical antipsychotics, mood stabilizers, a panoply of drugs that go way beyond the promise of Prozac that doctors are prescribing more and more these days. If you are going to scare people, get fucking up to date with your nonsense, asshole.

Out There Flapping

The third hearing is now in the bag, and John Eastman will be the one holding it when all is said and done.

It’s plainly obvious now that Trump, others in his circle and Eastman conspired to subvert the Constitution and the Electoral Count Act. As January 6th came close, Eastman had been told time and time again that the scheme couldn’t work if Pence wasn’t going to take an activist approach to his duties as Senate president. Even Eastman at several junctures was forced to admit it wouldn’t work. Not even a conservative Supreme Court would come to their aid. Especially not a conservative one, as the language of the 12th is clear.

But Eastman admitted, “You know how he gets when he has something in his head,” referring to our mercurial and intransigent former president. So he went along with the whole hullabaloo on January 6th, whipping up the crowd at the Ellipse along with Giuliani, Trump and others to insist on challenging the validity of the election, like they had all been doing since November 4th, regardless of whether or not they knew they had lost.

It’s been said over and over, but this was a coup, executed on multiple levels to create maximum chaos. Bannon and Navarro planned the floor uprising, Eastman and Trump tried to force the vice president to invalidate safe harbored, official ballots, and the Proud Boys and The Oath Keepers led the angry mob to lay waste to the Capitol as Trump tweeted to them that nothing they planned was working. To link these pieces of the plot together will be the DOJ’s most difficult task.

Once the smoke cleared, Eastman asked to be on the pardon list. Interestingly enough, he did not receive one. This can only mean one thing; that Trump is throwing him under the bus for this whole stunt. Trump, as I understand it, does not use email or communications that could be archived to do his business. So perhaps it will be hard to link Eastman and Trump in a plot of seditious conspiracy. However, if these losers don’t want to hang out in a 6×9 cell for the rest of their lives, it might be worth it to roll on El Jefe.

Maybe The Left Should Arm Itself. It Is Currently Outgunned

I really don’t want to have to write this post, but I think we’ve reached the point of gun saturation in this country that if one side, the right wing fascist side, is consistently sending lone wolves among us to kill innocent people, perhaps we have no choice but to balance the equation and arm ourselves in equal measure. Not to attack, but to defend and resist.

I don’t think I’m being too terribly alarmist when I say that right wing thugs could easily be organized into militias sanctioned by a rogue government to police our streets. The Ku Klux Klan comes to mind, and all of the militias at the tip of the spear of the attack on Congress were probably organized or at least abetted in their mission by government actors.

I don’t expect this situation to get any better. If you thought 2020 was hotly contested, just wait until this November when ballots start getting thrown out over picayune irregularities without the ability to cure, and when state legislatures don’t like the result of a close race they will fire election officials until they find some that will send the electors they prefer. We who love democracy will protest, no doubt, and find ourselves in check by police and possibly militia.

So, the question is, what good is gun control going to do? Is it feasible, or even wise, given the threat the populace faces from those who are already hoarding guns for a revolution or a civil war? In order to make this country safer, we’d need to confiscate hundreds of millions of guns. How is that going to work? Hell, the ATF couldn’t disarm David Koresh without killing every one of his unfortunate followers. Ruby Ridge didn’t go so hot either. The ineluctable fact is that we cannot disarm America. It’s simply too herculean a task at this point. And everyone knows that banning only produces a black market, much the way the prohibition of drugs does.

Sadly, the only path to resistance may be for anti-fascists to be ready in equal capacity for an attack. The time for nonviolence is long past, and it won’t solve this problem. There’s a chance that a work stoppage or a general strike might wake some people up, but we have not achieved consciousness as servants and laborers in this manner yet. Most will be afraid to walk off the jobs they need desperately. Who can blame them, in these times where everyone is hanging by a thread economically?

Some feel that an incremental approach to the gun control problem is an answer. That clearly doesn’t work; every time a slaughter happens, even the slightest move towards curbing gun violence causes the purchase of guns to exponentially rise. And you can bet those aren’t lefties hoarding when this happens. These people are paranoid wingnuts with itchy trigger fingers. They think there’s a war coming. And they are ready to fight it.

Are we?

Sorry, Christians. You Will Never Be Truly Scientific If You Don’t Know What Science Is

We here at the seminary have enjoyed kicking Ken Ham and his ridiculous ideas about science around. Today, I came across a twelve year old post from his organization of dipshits, Answers In Genesis. Poke around, they’re hilarious if you have a smattering of understanding evolution and the scientific method.

The post is titled, “Do Creationists Reject Science?” The answer, of course, is yes. They don’t expect their ignorant readers to know any better, though.

Let’s take this baby paragraph by paragraph. I may ignore one or two if they bore me.

“Anyone familiar with the creation/evolution debate should know that anti-creationists love to lob the accusation that creationists are “anti-science” or that they “reject science.” Evolutionists frequently label creationists “flat-earthers” and even go as far as suggesting that consistent creationists should deny the law of gravity!”

There is no such thing as an “evolutionist”. It is a scientific theory that is 100% accepted by scientists who study the natural world. The dichotomy is clear: you either believe the bullshit in the Bible, or you believe in what science has proven to be true, which makes you a scientist. Our early writers of the creation hadn’t a clue about what was above or below them. It’s really not much of a stretch between them and flat-earthers of today.

Much of the problem stems from the different starting points of biblical creationists and Darwinists. Everyone, scientist or not, must start their quests for knowledge with some unprovable axiom—some a priori belief on which they sort through experience and deduce other truths. This starting point, whatever it is, can only be accepted by faith; eventually, in each belief system, there must be some unprovable, presupposed foundation for reasoning (since an infinite regression is impossible).

What the fuck is a Darwinist? Again, this is ridiculous terminology, science isn’t arguing his theories anymore. These idiots can’t even get the idea of a hypothesis correct. You begin not with something unprovable- why the fuck would you bother doing an experiment if your conclusion would never waver from the hypothesis? You begin with something falsifiable-something that is subject to disproof, but could, through the rest of the steps in the scientific method, be shown to be true, or come to a conclusion that requires more hypotheses. That is how it is done. This has nothing to do with faith. If we are simply talking about cosmology and physics, then we must work backwards through the evidence to get the clearest possible picture of what is happening in the universe and what has happened. We’ve gotten so good that we know what happened a ten thousandth of a second before the creation of the universe. And we’re not guessing at that point-we’re observing and using theories of energy and matter distribution that prove to be correct every time. Some of us are answering the question of how what seems like nothing became something. We’re doing exciting work, exciting thinking-not this boring-ass Biblical shit whose writers were consumed by superstition 2000 years ago.

You can’t ask a question, fail to get your answer, and just go “God must have done it. It says so right here in this Bible”. It’s a particular Christian prejudice they will never unlearn. God exists because the Bible says so, and the bible is the word of God.

Holy fucking circular logic.

But they do it anyway:

For Bible-believing Christians, God’s Word is our starting point: our presupposed foundation through which we interpret and balance fallen man’s ideas, including those derived scientifically. Although some may consider this a foolish faith, everyone has such faith in something. But which is foolish: faith in the unmovable Word of the omniscient creator God or faith in man’s fallible, changing ideas?

A-ha. You motherfuckers ARE anti-science, because our fallible changing ideas are what help us move on to more advanced experiments. When we developed things like lenses, the whole world was new. Nothing was as it seemed, small or large. You couldn’t ignore the previous fallibility if you tried. It’s the nature of science to keep questioning and looking, unless you are up against something like evolution, which has been impossible to disprove. Evidence piles up for it constantly, through the fossil record, through direct observation of organisms, and our ability to look at the genomes of any creature we wish. That is why it has special status as a theory, like relativity, like gravity. It remains the same no matter how many whacks you take at it (this is not totally true for some of these but for simplicity’s sake let’s leave it alone).

Also causing confusion is the simple distinction some try to make between “faith” and “science.” Answers in Genesis believes this dichotomy is in error, because some form of faith (in a religion) is required to believe in creation or evolution. Both creation and evolution make claims about an unrepeatable past that was not observed by humans. Thus both creation and evolution fall under the category of historical science.

The old “you weren’t there, so how could you know” argument. Well, that pretty much kills both science and religion, doesn’t it? Only belief in a magic book can get you out of this conundrum. I’ve already addressed the fact that there’s plenty of the observable past inside and outside our bodies.

This author goes on to extol the work of Gregor Mendel, a monk who taught us a lot about breeding and genetics by studying butterflies; and to disparage the work of Darwin, who merely made up a “story” about what he “thought” might be true. Mere “philosophizing”. In the author’s mind, these are different things, and one is of no use. But we do what Darwin did all the damn time in science; we see something interesting, and begin formulating hypotheses and creating ideas. And like it or not, Darwin has been right on the money every time. Indeed, we are all related, from the protozoan to the human. This is a process that has taken billions of years to occur. Religious weirdos always think that evolution must always mean a jump to another rung on the species ladder. No. Things evolve all the time. Every time something reproduces, an evolution can occur. Could be a negative one. There are so many factors that can contribute to an evolutionary change-even mere chance and error. It takes time we often can’t comprehend for life to order itself in a radically different macroevolutionary manner. The similarities between all creatures, though are simply impossible to ignore. But we have to be “special” in the religious mind, so people like Ken Ham won’t really engage Darwin’s actual theories, merely present cartoon versions of it. It’s easier to demolish a strawman than have an actual argument.

They end thusly:

We believe that the evidence, when speaking for itself, attests to the faith required to assemble a viewpoint on origins. When students have access to both sides of the argument, we have no doubt they will see that evolution, like creation, is a position supportable only through faith. When they see that many of the “evidences” for evolution are simply suppositions, they will understand that only God can give an eye-witness account. And, as we know from science, first-hand experience is much more reliable than just-so stories.

Do these people see the things they write? Is there anything more story-like than the creation myth? Talking snakes? Whole people made from ribs? Magic apples? Punishment by a deity just for knowing stuff? Light being created before the sun? The moon as a light source? Flaming swords and angels? And that’s just the first three idiotic chapters of the Bible. But somehow that’s more convincing than what science, always wondering, has shown us how things really are. And it will continue to find itself incorrect and improve upon itself and that is OK.

Uncertainty is what the religious mind cannot handle. We who are done with silly superstitions are fine with the unknown. You can’t know what you can’t know. So it goes.

Chinese Disconnect

The United States has been having some interesting…communication problems with China. Some of them are originating from the president. Since October, there have been several statements that the White House has had to “walk back”, clarifying our actual stance on Taiwan.

This isn’t a new phenomenon, but during his visit to Japan recently, he said a few things that are going to really piss off the People’s Republic. I will use his words so there is no misunderstanding.

Two things could be happening here:

#1 Biden is not up to speed on our policy regarding Taiwan, or

#2 The remarks are part of our continuing policy of strategic ambiguity.

#1 is always possible, if we are to keep advancing the theory that Biden’s mental acuity is declining and he’s off the reservation. #2 is a strong possibility as well; it would not be the first time that The United States has played crazy to deter actions from other nations. By saying two different things, the White House commo and Biden could be working in concert to discourage China from continuing their flexing of military muscle around the archipelago. I’m going with #2, because I am sure that if Biden is at cross purposes with actual policy, he has been spoken to by advisors and probably would not do it again.

But he keeps doing it. So I’m inclined to believe we are just up to our old unpredictability strategy. It seems to work pretty well, so I’m not totally alarmed by what appears to be a communication foul-up. Republican hawks don’t seem to be in the know on this, because Adam Kinzinger had a shit-fit on Twitter ranting that the Biden administration should fire everyone who is walking his statements back.

So someone needs to read The Taiwan Relations Act, and I’m not sure if it’s Joe Biden. Because we do not have a defense treaty with them; we do provide arms for self defense but we have never written anything that says unconditionally we go to war with mainland China if they fuck with Taiwan. Not since 1980, at least.

Little noticed is an economic accord Biden signed on his visit to Japan, with multiple Asian nations signing on. One of them is NOT Taiwan. So there’s a limit to what we are going to do for them that would upset the Communists. I think Biden is simply putting them on notice that they should remain non-expansionist, unlike their neighbor to the north- because they just don’t know what the senile hawk in the Oval Office could do next to keep the world order as it is.

More Chronicles Of Ginni

Not too far back, I authored an opinion that Ginni Thomas’ involvement in the coup was tenuous at best. Yes, Ginni has connections to several of the plotters to steal 2020, but at the time I wrote it just didn’t sound like she had any actual clue as to what was being done, merely ideas about how it could be done.

John Eastman will go down as the chief plotter of the steal, and any of his foot soldiers will also go down for seditious conspiracy. But I still don’t see Ginni being one of them.

Now it has come to light that Ginni was very much convinced that the elector plot was going to work, even as it was on very shaky legal ground. And to that effect, she did contact family friend Republican Arizona State Representative Shawna Bolick, exhorting her to consider sending a false, or in Ginni’s words, “clean” slate of electors. This was November 9. Ginni received a response from Bolick the following day, advising Thomas to file a complaint if she had evidence of electoral fraud.

Ginni never did that. Why? Because she didn’t have it, just like all the other claimants that the elections were stolen. It took Ginni a month to re-contact Bolick, sending her a brief message telling her to view a fucking YouTube video as proof of a conspiracy, which we all know is an unimpeachable source of information. Well, we know that Bolick was unconvinced, because there was no elector fuckery to come from Arizona. She was probably one of many Republicans (Raffensperger of Georgia comes to mind) who were disappointed in the outcome of the election, but not willing to break the rules to achieve a desired result.

I have no doubt that Bolick received many other such requests from less prominent people. And it’s simply not a crime to contact a rep and say something’s wrong. But without evidence, all it is is conjecture. And Thomas didn’t have the goods and clearly wasn’t prepared to be a conspirator, she obviously got no marching orders from Eastman. Other lawyers were hard at work on that.

Ginni Thomas is a hyperactive, paranoid fretter, who from all communications I have seen from her paint her as simply a nut, a true believer convinced without evidence, like most faithful cultists. Those kinds of people are poison to a plot. I may be wrong in the end here, but I gotta see harder evidence than contact with a legislator with no follow up complaint.

%d bloggers like this: