Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Totalism's new guise

By Donald Sensing

I wrote in 2012 in The American Totalist party,

It  is time for plain speaking: true to its Leftist, "progressive" nature, the Democrat party is the American proto-fascist party, pure and simple, on this as on most every other public matter. An apt description of fascism is that is it one variant of what psychiatrist and historian Robert Lifton called “totalism.” Professor Anna Geifman explains the Totalist political world view:
... Its devotees — anarchists, Marxists, or Islamists — want to impose a new order based on an “all-or-nothing claim to truth.” They operate within distinctive parameters of a “theology of Armageddon — a final battle between good and evil” –  in which the stakes are nothing less than universal salvation. As outlined in Eric Hoffer’s classic, The True Believer, such movements have mastered the art of “religiofication,” that is, converting political grievances into messianic aspirations and “practical purposes into holy causes.” [HT: American Digest]
No one gravitates to the Left in order to let others live their lives as they see fit. The beating heart of Totalism in all its forms is power and control over others. This has become the raison d'etre of the Democrat party.

And so we understand the actual objective of "gender" mandates and universities complying with federal mandates of rape persecution under Title IX and transgendered bathrooms
The goal, as is always the case with such movements, is to remake humanity. What the people behind this latest version won’t tell you is that their project requires each and every one of us to deny our own humanity.
The gender mandates are not about fairness or compassion or anything like that. They are about control, pure and simple. It is to place the Totalist American government in the middle of Americans' most intimate and private relationships. But that's what Totalists do, they use mandates and law to create a maze of requirements for which transgressions can be persecuted at the whim of a mid-level government factotum. Totalism is the end of American liberty.

What they do is create new categories of crime or regulatory violations that do not involve actually harming anyone or committing an act that had ever been imagined criminal before. It is the creation of a new mala in prohibitum, crimes that are crimes simply because the government says so, as distinguished from mala in se, crimes that are crimes in their own nature, such as robbery or murder.

And so with mandates about gender and gender identity:
In such a scenario, the state controls all personal relationships right at their source: the biological family. The abolition of family autonomy would be complete, because the biological family would cease to be a default arrangement. The “family” would be whatever the state allows it to be. Again, in the de-sexed world of gender politics, all personal relationships end up controlled and regulated by the state.

Martha Fineman, a gender legal theorist, touched on this in her 2004 book The Autonomy Myth. In it, she argues for the abolition of state-recognized marriage because it allows for family privacy, writing that “Once the institutional protection [is] removed, behavior would be judged by standards established to regulate interactions among all members of society” (emphasis added).

Gender ideology is an effective statist tool. Cultural Marxists use it to corrupt language and sow confusion, especially among children. It paves the way for the removal of the institutional protections for freedom of association and family privacy that stand in the way of “regulating interactions among all members of society.”
In 1932, Mussolini defined Fascism for the Italian Encyclopedia. It included this nugget:
The foundation of Fascism is the conception of the State, its character, its duty, and its aim. Fascism conceives of the State as an absolute, in comparison with which all individuals or groups are relative, only to be conceived of in their relation to the State. The conception of the Liberal State is not that of a directing force, guiding the play and development, both material and spiritual, of a collective body, but merely a force limited to the function of recording results: on the other hand, the Fascist State is itself conscious and has itself a will and a personality -- thus it may be called the "ethic" State....

...The Fascist State organizes the nation, but leaves a sufficient margin of liberty to the individual; the latter is deprived of all useless and possibly harmful freedom, but retains what is essential; the deciding power in this question cannot be the individual, but the State alone.... 
Mussolini also summed the Fascist principle another way, explained in March of last year by the "Classic Liberal" blog
A popular slogan of the Italian Fascists under Mussolini was, “Tutto nello Stato, niente al di fuori dello Stato, nulla contro lo Stato” (everything for the state, nothing outside the state, nothing against the state). I recall this expression frequently as I observe the state’s far-reaching penetration of my own society.
What of any consequence remains beyond the state’s reach in the United States today? Not wages, working conditions, or labor-management relations; not health care; not money, banking, or financial services; not personal privacy; not transportation or communication; not education or scientific research; not farming or food supply; not nutrition or food quality; not marriage or divorce; not child care; not provision for retirement; not recreation; not insurance of any kind; not smoking or drinking; not gambling; not political campaign funding or publicity; not real estate development, house construction, or housing finance; not international travel, trade, or finance; not a thousand other areas and aspects of social life. ...
The American experiment was great while it lasted, but really, we should have known that it could not last and perhaps we should be surprised that it lasted as long as it did.  

But it's over:

Totalists, both of them, and even more so that socialist in chief Bernie Sanders.

Bookmark and Share

Marxism disproved, but it doesn't matter

By Donald Sensing

Facts never matter to Marxists.

To see why, read, "The Intellectual Origins of America-Bashing," by Lee Harris.

Mussolini's Template: "Greetings, Slaves"

By Donald Sensing

Greetings, Slaves | PJ Media

Perhaps the first major 20th century writer to realize that the ambition of all true Communists should be to become billionaire revolutionaries was Hilaire Belloc. In his 1912 book, The Servile State, Belloc argued the then-burgeoning Communist movement would find more success ditching Leninism in favor of an alliance with Crony Capitalists to reinstate Slavery. "Slavery, or a Servile State in which those who do not own the means of production shall be legally compelled to work for those who do, and shall receive in exchange a security of livelihood."

This modern form of slavery would address not only the concerns of the revolutionaries by fixing job insecurity and guaranteeing retirement on a plantation basis, but also assuage the monopolists, who stay up nights worrying about preserving market share in the face of competition. An alliance between socialists and crony capitalists would solve both problems at once. The only price to pay for this convenience is the loss of public freedom and that is readily paid.
That is where we are heading now (Europe is long gone by) and there will not be a wholly peaceful reversal, if there is even a reversal at all. (An I do not think there will be one.)

Bookmark and Share

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Nobel peace prize update

By Donald Sensing

Nobel Peace prize laureate Barack Obama opens military arms sales to Vietnam.

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Can you come up with $1,000 right now?

By Donald Sensing

According to an Associated Press poll, the great majority of Americans cannot, even those making $100,000 a year.


Wednesday, May 18, 2016

The answer to Fermi's paradox revealed

By Donald Sensing

Physicist Enrico Fermi is well known for posing a famous paradox now named after him, the question that if life in the universe is (presumably) not uncommon, "Where is everybody?"

Fermi had calculated that once any species in the Milky Way achieved the capability to travel through space, it would be able to reach every extent of the galaxy in five million years. Since the galaxy is many billions of years old, he postulated, we should be practically surrounded by alien life or evidence thereof.

But we're not. So back to the question: "Where is everybody?"

The entire paradox depends on the assumption that earth and humanity are typical examples of planets and life anywhere else in the universe. This is usually referred to as the Theory of Mediocrity, that earth and its creatures are just average, universally. The problem is that Mediocrity is not a scientific conclusion but a presumption that is necessary for ETI searchers to do any work at all.

Many serious solutions have been offered as the paradox's resolution, but none really hold up.

But now I know!

Quite simply, the alien civilizations became so advanced that they fell victim to utterly incompetent self government. In other words, they fell into the deep, dark pit of socialism, and they fell into it one more time than they were able to get out.

And so the scene today on a typical alien planet:

Update: Five recent examples showing no matter where, no matter how, giving the Left political power is a comically stupid idea. The relevant part?
Typically, governments which fail catastrophically will invariably fold. The universal understanding that in order to maintain power a government will have to provide the necessary functions of a public sector — national security and law enforcement, infrastructure, basic health and education services, courts and the rule of law.

What we know in the 21st century is that the failure to provide adequately for those necessities, and particularly in concert with substituting other functions that are not necessities like wealth redistribution, regulating the intake of soda drinks, and micromanaging the use of real estate, is no longer sufficient to produce the removal of an incompetent government. What we know now is that rather than turn out a poisonous, overreaching gang of troglodytes in charge of a particular jurisdiction, the people contributing the tax base said troglodytes misappropriate from will simply decamp for better locales — and the rulers happily preside over the ruin that results, free of any particular threat of a middle-class revolt.

It’s this dynamic, playing out across the globe, that shows us civilizational decline in an advancing state.

Relatedly, technologically-advanced reality simulation has been proposed as an explanation for the lack of nearby aliens. First, this answer says that hyperdrives and FTL travel simply were never developed (and so may be impossible) and that the unimaginably vast distances of the galaxy make exploration simply too hard.

Then we have this: Virtual reality will completely transform children into zombies.

A girl tries virtual reality glasses at the Infosys's stand of the 2016 Hanover industrial trade fair in Hanover, Germany.
Warren Ferrell wrote,
While girls average a healthy five hours a week on video games, boys average 13. The problem? The brain chemistry of video games stimulates feel-good dopamine that builds motivation to win in a fantasy while starving the parts of the brain focused on real-world motivation. He'll win at Madden football, but participate in no sport.
It makes sense that once a species develops the technology for space flight, it has also developed the technology for all manner of other things, including entertainment.

And that means - since we assume evolutionary processes are much the same everywhere else as here - that those species become addicted to virtual experiences more than real ones.
The result is that we don’t seek reproductive success directly; we seek tasty foods that have tended to promote survival, and luscious mates who have tended to produce bright, healthy babies. The modern result? Fast food and pornography. Technology is fairly good at controlling external reality to promote real biological fitness, but it’s even better at delivering fake fitness—subjective cues of survival and reproduction without the real-world effects. Having real friends is so much more effort than watching Friends. Actually colonizing the galaxy would be so much harder than pretending to have done it when filming Star Wars or Serenity. The business of humanity has become entertainment, and entertainment is the business of feeding fake fitness cues to our brains.
Yuval Noah Harari, a lecturer at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem:
Instead of morphing into omnipotent, all-knowing masters of the universe, the human mob might end up jobless and aimless, whiling away our days off our nuts on drugs, with VR headsets strapped to our faces. Welcome to the next revolution. [Link]
So species that could explore space don't for no reason other than it simply isn't fun enough. More here.

Bookmark and Share

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

At least one woman in Britain gets it

By Donald Sensing

And at Oxford, no less.

Bookmark and Share

The best that socialists can offer

By Donald Sensing

Frederic J. Stimson was the first United States Ambassador to Argentina 1915–1921. Previous envoys held the title Envoy Extraordinary and Minister Plenipotentiary. He was a Harvard Law graduate and writer of several influential books on law.

He understood socialism perfectly well, much better than almost any American today.

Here is the text in context:

Meanwhile, the collapse of socialism in Venezuela cannot possibly be held to be surprising except for the speed which it occurred.

It is a common misconception that socialism is about helping poor people. Actually, what socialism does is create poor people, and keep them poor. And that’s not by accident.
Under capitalism, rich people become powerful. But under socialism, powerful people become rich. When you look at a socialist country like Venezuela, you find that the rulers are fabulously wealthy even as the ordinary citizenry deals with empty supermarket shelves and electricity rationing.
The daughter of Venezuela’s socialist ruler, Hugo Chavez, is the richest individual in Venezuela, worth billions of dollars... .
But poverty isn’t a byproduct of socialism: It’s a requirement, as illustrated by Cato Institute analyst Juan Carlos Hidalgo's report concerning Venezuela:
A couple of years ago, the then minister of education admitted that the aim of the regime’s policies was “not to take the people out of poverty so they become middle class and then turn into escu├ílidos” (a derogatory term to denote opposition members). In other words, the government wanted grateful, dependent voters, not prosperous Venezuelans.
That's why, for example, the Obama administration wants more Americans to depend on food stamps than ever before. "Without us you'll starve!"

Update: Richard Fernandez: The damage done by socialism,
could never have been inflicted by the mere round-the-clock bombing of 1,000 B-29s dropping high explosives.  No rain of bombs could have obliterated every store, business, factory, school, hospital and larder with the fine-grained thoroughness achieved by the ideas of the Communist Manifesto.  Only an idea capable of seeping into every nook and cranny can do that. The destructive potential of a squadron of B-2 bombers is trivial compared to the potential inherent in a Sealed Train carrying an agitator or a thousand radical madrassahs preaching murder far into the night.
If every sigificant naval power in the world had united to blockade Venezuela's ports the people of that country would not be suffering much worse.

Bookmark and Share

Monday, May 16, 2016

Legal crack

By Donald Sensing

What Happens to Your Brain on Sugar, Explained by Science

"So basically, Oreos are legal crack."

It's an apt comparison, see "Is sugar worse than cocaine?"

Bookmark and Share

Thursday, May 12, 2016

The Clintons and the Middle East

By Donald Sensing

Mark Tapscott reports,

BILL AND HILLARY CLINTON GOT AT LEAST $100 MILLION FROM MIDDLE EAST SHEIKS: The Clintons have done something that has never before been done by any U.S. political figures – Using speaking fees, business partnerships, foundation grants and who knows what else made possible by public service to make themselves fabulously wealthy, without apparent regard for who suffered the consequences.
How interesting that their cash cow is the political class of the Middle East - and in the Middle East, except Israel, the political class and the moneyed class are the one and the same.

Why? Because as I explained almost two years ago in, "America is adopting the Middle East model, and it's not Islam," in the Middle East "wealth came from political power because there was no means to create wealth of significance apart of political power."
So for centuries, nay millennia, the way to become wealthy there was first to gain political power. This pattern survives to this day. Saddam Hussein, for example, was a nobody of no material means until he literally murdered his way into power in Iraq in 1979. It was after gaining control of Iraq's government that Saddam became wealthy beyond all avarice.

Now the point of this little history lesson is this: In the United States, the means to create wealth and the exercise of political power in public office are being steadily unified. We are already well along to adopting a Middle East model. Since the Obama administration came into being, the wealthiest counties of America and the most politically-powerful counties of America have for the first tome become the one and same - all concentrated in and around Washington, D.C.

Through minute regulation of economic activity, America's political class is deliberately suppressing wealth creation over the broad expanse of the country, while funneling tax dollars to favored cronies. Remember, for example, Solyndra?

At the same time, the political figures are using their offices to gain personal wealth. 
And no one more skilled or devoted to it than Bill and Hillary Clinton.

But that's socialism for you, comrades!

Update: "On Clinton Cash, Or, It’s Always Worse Than You Think"

Bookmark and Share