Open Thread

One of the arguments made against term limits is that by thrusting inexperienced people into legislatures every few years, we’d really be turning over power to the un-elected legislative staffers. These staffers, with their years of legislative experience, would simply buffalo the legislator’s into voting for whatever the staff wanted. Ok, fair enough.

How is this different from what we have now?

Do you think any of the career politicians in Congress actually read and understand the bills they vote on?

What this thought has led me to is a wonder as to whether or not institutions actually work? Outside of dogmatic governed religious bodies (most notably, of course, the Catholic Church – though you’ll note various problems there), I don’t think they really do. The only one I can think of which had at least some long-term track record of success was the German General Staff. And it cost Germany two World Wars. But you do have to hand it to them – over those two World Wars they squeezed out the maximum amount of military power Germany could provide and applied it to Germany’s enemies in the most effective way possible – thus accounting for the rather lopsided Kraut to Non-Kraut casualty ratio (not counting Holocaust, it is like 5 non-Krauts killed for every Kraut they killed). But if that is our standard of “working”, I’d rather have more failures.

I’m not quite sure what we do here – but there has to be turnover, of that I am sure. As we can’t apply dogma to non-religious bodies (we have no one who would be universally respected to define dogma and thus heresy), the only defense mechanism I can think of is term limits. And to answer the charge that this would leave the permanent officials in charge – they have to have term limits, too.

It is one thing when a corporate bureaucracy becomes ossified, quite another when a government bureaucracy does. Because the government bureaucracy can jail and kill us; so, lots more serious. Just as we must find a means of ejecting politicians from office, so we’ll have to find a way to eject bureaucrats from office. Maybe we’ll eventually have to enact an amendment which says that you can’t serve, elected or appointed, in the federal government for more than 20 years?

Here’s a story saying that NYC cops may be opting for retirement at the first opportunity. I’ve seen other stories like this. Bottom line, if I was a cop in a blue jurisdiction, I’d be out, pension or no pension. You know for certain that the police and government officials will not back you up and if something you do winds up in a viral video then regardless of the facts of the case, you will be fired and very likely prosecuted. Just not worth it. And even if you think you’ll just turn a blind eye in certain areas of town (as is happening – in “George Floyd Square” in Minneapolis, it is getting very wild west), you still run the risk of having to make an arrest of someone non-white and each time you do that, you are at risk of being the next viral video. I can’t see any pension being worth that risk. And I don’t see a real way out of this – the blue city officials have staked out the position that BLM/Antifa are right and the cops are wrong. I don’t think you can re-cork that bottle and now say that the cops are right.

Joe’s first speech to Congress will be to empty seats. GOPers should place cardboard cutouts of themselves in the seats just to highlight the absurdity of this corrupt, senile, old fool being installed in the White House.

The children of Chernobyl aren’t showing any significant damage. Not really surprised – the radiation levels are probably set much higher than public safety really requires.

The Washington Post would like you to know that Senator Scott (R-SC) isn’t black enough.

Stop Reacting. Start Thinking.

Earlier today, I got myself into trouble on Twitter: I had suggested that we shouldn’t immediately dismiss an idea because it conforms in some to what BLM might want. I got a pretty consistent explosion of outrage directed my way. And, I understand it and am sympathetic to it. But it was difficult to try and explain myself in a series of Tweets…so, here is a larger exposition of my ideas.

Our opponents aren’t a rag-tag bunch of Bolshevik wannabees: they are a well-funded and tightly organized Ruling Class which is determined to have its way. The rag-tag rioters out there shouting to kill the police and such are just the bought and paid for operatives of this Ruling Class. And the key is that the rioters don’t know it.

Some of them don’t know, simply: in other words, they are just ignorant fools following along with whatever seems cool at the moment. But others have a level of sincerity against injustice and simply think they are fighting the Establishment when what they are doing is the Establishment’s bidding. You’ll note how quickly “Defund the Police” got discarded…and even when it has advanced a bit, as in Minneapolis, the big shots are merely hiring private security details (on the taxpayer dime, of course). The target of the mob is, what? It is Trump. It is religion. It is you and me. It isn’t Nike and Hollywood. It isn’t Pelosi. It isn’t Yale’s gigantic endowment. It isn’t the actual system of control: the government bureaucracies; the intelligence agencies; the megacorporations; popular culture manufacturers.

My idea is that there is, indeed, a great deal of injustice out there – and a great deal of this is visited on the poorest Americans, who are disproportionately minority. I’ve talked about this before: poor people simply ground up in a legal system they can’t navigate their way out of. Some times, of course, because they are incompetent…but some times simply because once you get caught in it, there’s no way out unless you have a bucket of money. From the perspective of such a person, it seems at times like things are stacked against them…and then they see us, on our side, backing the blue…the same blue which the Establishment set up and which goes lightly where it can get burned (ie, rich and middle class neighborhoods) and drops like a hammer where it can (ie, poor neighborhoods). It can seem to such a person that you and I are the problem…that we set this up.

We know we didn’t. We back the blue not because we’re bastards, but because we know that law is a must. But even our side has been a little blind here: what if the laws, themselves, are insane? Shouldn’t the blue we back have gone, at some point, and said “I won’t enforce this insane law. Fire me if you want, but I became a cop to make sure justice and peace prevail.” Never a peep like that – and, finally, we got our taste of it with the lockdowns: we were finally the people being targeted for the enforcement of insane decrees of government. And the ground shifted and we were prepared for deep reforms of the police…which also entailed a willingness for deep reforms of all government and how it interacts with the people. Hey, presto!, riots…and we’re all back to “back the blue” and lets crack some heads. We’re forgetting that the same people who sent the cops out to arrest kids in a playground also let the rioters run wild…and in both the arresting of kids and the allowing of riots the police did as they were told.

How about we stop being suckers, at least for a bit?

We really have to start thinking and stop reacting. The riots do need to stop. The police do need to enforce the laws. But the laws have to be sane – and we can’t get sane laws until we get power and we won’t get power until the overwhelming mass of the people swing in line behind us. 51% won’t do it. That’ll just lead to our eventual political defeat or civil war…or both. We need 60 and 65%. We need to convince huge masses of people who ostensibly hate us to come over to us. This means we must talk to them – and talk to them about what they think is important. And do things they would like to have done. Not the Bolshevik stuff (the Establishment tolerates the odd Bolshy in the realms of power…but keeps them on a leash: eg, Bernie). But stuff like reforming the police. Instituting neighborhood militia for routine patrols. Pouring in buckets of money confiscated from liberal moneybags (Yale’s endowment would be a good place to start).

It comes down to this: what are you trying to conserve? A theory, or a civilization? The institutions are corrupt to the bone. Our Ruling Class is un-American and merely interested in keeping its wealth and privilege; and to do so it feels it must destroy family, property and religion. I think it is time we thought anew and acted anew…that we cease to fall into the categories the Ruling Class has provided for us and start to reach out to all. Some will spit on us. That’s ok. But some will come over if we show that we want justice…and if we show them who their real enemies are.