2022

First off: always listen to this on New Years Day.

That done: what the heck is it doing being 2022? One of my granddaughters turns 10 later this month…I do remember my 10th birthday very vividly. That was 1974. I was fascinated by the whole thing of being 10 years old. And I remember figuring things out – that I’d be 20 in 1984. That I would turn 36 in 2000. 2022? How the heck did that happen?

Now I get to figure out things like if I live as long as my Dad my expiration date comes in 2047. Of course, make it as long as Grandpa then I’ll be around 2052. As long as my Grand-aunt Alice, 2063. But, slice it any way you like, there’s more time behind than in front. This doesn’t disturb me. Maybe it should, but it doesn’t. 57 years is already a long time: we’re just tacking on at this point. Will have to point out to the granddaughter that if she shakes my hand then she’s one handshake away from 1896, when my grandfather was born – that might be an interesting point for her to make with her grandchildren 40 or 50 years from now.

The country is a complete mess – the only thing that keeps China from attacking is the remaining uncertainty of whether or not we’d use nuclear weapons if our backs go to the wall. As of this moment, I doubt we could raise a military force sufficient to win against any 1st or 2nd rate power. We’re too divided and our military leadership is perfectly useless. I don’t know what they teach at the service academies these days, but it certainly isn’t whatever is needed to win a war. And any war fighting capacity which is imparted is shoved out by the time they rise to the top where the only concerns are pleasing their political masters and feathering their retirement nest. And the core military power of our nation – the lower and middle class people outside the deep blue areas: do they want to fight for America as it is right now? Do you want one of your family members to fight under these generals and admirals, with China Joe as CinC? It always astonished me how various parts of France, left and right, didn’t want to stand up and fight against Hitler – but these days I perhaps understand a little better. They should, of course, have fought: but at the time, it seemed to many of them that fighting for France merely perpetuated a corrupt and useless Ruling Class.

Earlier today I paid about $180.00 for $100.00 in groceries: I don’t know exactly what they use to judge inflation but I suspect that the numbers, like all government numbers these days, aren’t giving us the rock solid truth. It wouldn’t be in Team Pudding Brain’s interest to show inflation as high as I figure it must be…prices are getting out of control. Bad news: there are indications that we’ve only seen the start of the inflationary surge. Remember, these things take a little while to work into the system. From what I’ve read, for instance, the price of fertilizer is vastly higher…which means the farmers are going to have to charge more for, say, corn. That will make it more expensive to get your Doritos, but also more expensive for everything that uses corn…and its a lot of things. On and on it will go, pushing one thing after another. I hope inflation moderates: for me and for everyone, but I worry that it won’t, at least not any time soon. There is too much money out there right now and goods and services are getting harder and harder to procure.

Meanwhile, they’re moving what must be hundreds of thousands of illegals all over the country – sure, they are hoping that changing demographics will help them (but, will it? Polls show Latino voters aren’t keen on pronoun wars) but, still, what is the real point here? It could just be that they’re stupid…they just believe they can’t stop people from crossing and now they have to move them somewhere. They might do a vaccine mandate for air travel, but no vaccine mandate for crossing illegally. We’re in the Twilight Zone of a dead Ruling Class still holding the levers of power.

One thing I am fairly confident about is that they don’t know how hated they are. The Ruling Class, I mean. And not just by us: plenty of far left people despise them as well. Promises were made, after all. Stupid promises, in our view, but still promises – go Resist the Bad Orange Man and when he’s out you’ll get a cancellation of student debt and free college…and a host of other things as well. They aren’t delivering. Team Pudding Brain let a contract out for an $84 million facility to make Covid tests…which won’t start operating until 2024. Hunter is making bank selling his “art”. Nancy Pelosi just bought a retirement home in Florida…while in her San Francisco hard core liberals are starting to buy guns as police protection fails utterly (and not just because of “defund the police” – even the police they have are, apparently, turning a blind eye to crime. Why wouldn’t they? If they arrest someone and if it can be even willfully misconstrued as bad by the cops, their lives are ruined. Better to just drive by and pretend you didn’t see it). Everything is falling apart -but we see that they are doing well and are ignoring the Covid restrictions (AOC was caught in Miami this past week while her New York endured another round of Covid lockdowns).

What will come of this hatred remains to be seen – but we might get a very strong taste of it just 11 months from now. Polls are, as usual, nearly useless, but they are bad for Democrats. But for me, just looking at how things are, if I were Chair of the RNC I’d make sure I had GOP candidates even in D+10 districts. Literally anything is possible.

Meanwhile, I write – Kings and Queen will be out very shortly. That is Book V. But Heirs (Book VI) and Empress (Book VII) are 90% done. I’m about 1/3 done with The Crimson Blade (Book VIII) and I’ve already made a start on the still untitled Book IX. Meanwhile, still working on Aleste and the Icecrystal Dragons and putting ideas together for Survival (an end-of-the-world novel, which may turn out to have zombies in it) and Last Strand, the working title for a thriller about a Chinese plot against America. I write because I enjoy it. Because I believe the stories are good. And because when I’m in those worlds, I’m not watching the enslavement of the world and the destruction of the United States.

I hope you have your escape from today! If you don’t, get one – we’re in for a rocky ride. I think, with God’s grace, will come out the other side ok, but we are living in the Chinese curse of interesting times. Things are going to get stranger and perhaps far more dangerous – but with that faith in God, we’ll get through it all.

Open Thread

I’d like to say I don’t know where the time went – but, I do: still writing! Kings and Queen (Book V) will be out soon so I was doing some last touches on that…but, honestly, I’m already deep into Book IX. Not only that, but my granddaughter said my stories needed a dragon, so I took Celeste’s daughter Aleste and with assist from the granddaughter, I’m writing Aleste and the Icecrystal Dragons. So, hey guys! How ya been?

Anyways – so, Smollett is guilty, as we all knew he was as soon as the story broke. I’m sure if someone did some digging they could find something that almost amounts to an actual hate crime by a GOPer, but even then, not really. The trouble the Left has here is that we’re not racists. I pointed out on Twitter that if Smollett had actually gone to MAGA country he would have learned that we’re very nice people who don’t give a darn what you do as long as you don’t adversely affect housing prices. Keep your act together and we’re cool.

There’s a poll out for youngsters about their willingness to be friends with people who have different political views and for Democrat kiddies, they are overwhelmingly against being friends with Republicans. Part of this, I’m sure, is peer pressure: they don’t want to be known as someone who is friends with Republicans because all the cool kids don’t have any Republican friends. But it is also of the nature of the Left: hate is what motivates them. It is why they do what they do.

Some people are pointing out how horrible the crime is in Democrat cities and are asking when the DA’s in those towns will finally say, “enough”. I tell them: don’t hold your breath. It is the Left’s opinion that the prosperity and safety of middle class America is a false front on an intrinsically evil society. The Left is letting the criminals out to prey because they believe that it will help generate an acute social crisis which will turn people away from the American system. It is Lenin’s old dictum: the worse, the better. There is a fly in the ointment, however: the Left is the Ruling Class. So, when the people do turn against the system, these junior league Bolsheviks will find all of the hatred directed their way.

Team Pudding Brain has their solution to the inflation problem: order the MSM to talk about how it isn’t a problem. And like proper lapdogs, the MSM is going right along with this order. I’m not sure how well telling us to disbelieve our lying eyes will work. I suspect it won’t. One smart guy did point out that Biden hasn’t remotely hit bottom: apparently, he shoveled out some money for parents and didn’t broadcast too widely that the money is their child tax deduction for 2021…which means that when people go to do their taxes in April of 2022, they’ll find that they already spent their child deduction. I’m sure that’ll go over real well.

Lots of people are noting that Latino voters are dropping the Dems. For males the Latino vote is almost mirroring the vote for white males. If you really drill down to it, the only really strong demographics for the Democrats are African-Americans and white, college educated women. And even the black vote is starting to get a few cracks in it. I don’t think that the Democrats can win much with that. As for the Latinos – don’t expect them to be Buckley-ite Conservatives. They just want law and order, good schools and a vibrant economy. In other words, what the Democrats would at least try to get for them before they were taken over by the aforementioned Bolsheviks. It is, though, our opening…and the GOP should push hard for Latino votes. A vote in 2022 for a good economy can be turned by, say, 2028 into a vote for limited government.

Russia is making waves in Ukraine and it looks like Pudding Brain will roll over for them. In this, probably for the best: can you imagine how catastrophic our defeat would be if we got into a shooting war with the current crew in charge? Also, we don’t have a strategic interest in who governs the Donbas. OTOH, the case can be made that we should stand against military aggression, as such. Not so sure I’m on board with that. Used to be. Maybe not any longer. Some things have to be worked out and war is just politics by other means. Putin – correctly – sees control of the Donbas as vital to his national security: the resources there are vital. Our largest strategic interest is to contain China. Sending an army to Kiev doesn’t serve that interest. Meanwhile, our useless allies won’t send an army…mostly because they haven’t got one. And, finally, the reason Putin is moving is because he knows he’s only got a short time – the miracle of having such a useless American President might never happen again. He kept quiet for Trump because he knew – from Trump’s actions – that Trump wouldn’t put up with it. Putin knows that he can walk all over Biden.

Open Thread

As I write it is late Tuesday so we still don’t know the Rittenhouse verdict – I am nervous about it as the self defense was so patently obvious that not guilty should have taken an hour. Is it hung up on one or two holding out for innocent, or one or two holding out for guilty? I guess we’ll find out when we find out.

The bottom line, though, is that where there is a Democrat DA, you don’t have a right to defend yourself. If you do against those allied politically with the DA, you will be prosecuted and if nothing else, the process will be the punishment. I urge anyone living under a DA where there is risk of Leftist violence to move to a place which has a Republican DA. But even then, watch out: if the federal government under a Democrat decides to charge you with civil rights violations because you defended yourself, you’ll be in the same predicament.

What this trial has done is shown that we need specific laws on the books securing the right to self defense. We have to make it clear that if you start violence, anyone can pretty much do anything they like to you if they feel that you are a threat to persons or property. We obviously will not be able to get these things enacted in Blue States, but in every State we can, do it. So that if a local Blue DA decides to mess around, won’t be able to.

“I Did That” Biden stickers are showing up everywhere as Republicans learn political street fighting. They are heavily effective – and things like high gas prices are set to sink the Democrats quite a lot.

It looks like we finally have a whistleblower at the FBI who is on our side – revealing that the FBI has conducted counter-terrorism investigations against parents attending school board meetings. This is terrifying stuff – the FBI is becoming the Demcorats Stasi. The next GOP President will have to largely dismantle the FBI and start all over.

Glenn Reynolds notes that we’re hampered in our space program because we worry too much about safety. Sure, we do have to take care – but the bottom line is that if humans really want to live in space and on other planets, then humans are going to have to die in space and on other planets. We should already have a permanent presence on the Moon and be scouting sites for a permanent presence on Mars by now. If we’re going to go, go. Don’t fuss too much about it.

Open Thread

Prices are rising and real wages are falling and the alleged President’s approval rating officially is in the low-40s. This is the sort of thing which causes political meltdowns. At this moment in time, any Democrat in a district or State D+10 or less should be running as if they’re losing.

Real problem for them: if the economic situation doesn’t change, then it won’t matter how they run: they’re going to lose. And even D+15 might not be enough.

The kicker: the only way to fix this is to kill inflation…but doing that causes a recession.

Looks like we won’t return to the Moon before 2025. I’m actually ok with that – I don’t want Pudding Brain’s name on the plaque.

Masked up California is having much more Covid than unmasked Florida. Meanwhile, Sweden which never masked is done with it. The initial “15 days to slow the spread” was, in the event, a mistake – but, an understandable one. Everything we’ve done since then – every last effort – has been useless or counterproductive. But the Democrats won’t let this go: they just extended the mask mandate here in Vegas. No reason. There’s no science behind it. It is just because. Saw a recent poll where Democrats believe that the hospitalization rate for unvaccinated Covid is 50%. It is less than 1%. But if you watch the MSM, that is what you believe because that is what they imply with their fear mongering.

Kyle Rittenhouse is, as we all know, completely innocent. But we’ll have to see what the jury says – from what I can glean from the trial, the prosecutor has no case. Remember: Rittenhouse is charged, among other things, with first degree murder – meaning the State is arguing that Rittenhouse had malice aforethought: that he went there intending to kill. Even the most negative reading of Rittenhouse’s actions don’t allow such an absurd view. But that is what they’re going for. But the reality is that rioters went after him and he merely defended himself. There is zero indication that he sought the situation where shooting might occur. The only thing they might have him on is a misdemeanor gun possession charge. So, we’ll see what happens. But even if convicted, expect that he’ll be released on appeal.

The usual weak sisters on the Right are arguing variously that Rittenhouse did wrong and/or that he shouldn’t have been there. My question on that is: why shouldn’t he have been there? Are we all supposed to just clear out when the DNC is paying Antifa to riot? Is that the rule? That when they are working up their riots we just have to let it all happen? Not even be on the streets we have a perfect right to be on? This is what, I think, irritates us most about the Right – their assumption that we have a responsibility to make life easy for the Left…that they are allowed to do whatever they damn well please, and we just have to let it happen.

Mayor Pete was out there grappling with our transportation crisis the other day by…complaining about racist bridges. Yes. You read that correctly. Seems that the Left claims that certain bridges around New York City were made deliberately low so that buses filled with blacks and Puerto Ricans couldn’t get to the beach. Of course that is all drivel – the bridges were built that way because back in those days that is how you did that particular sort of design. But it was interesting to see. The hook the Left had was that the designer was, indeed, a racist. No doubt about that. Plenty of contemporary documentary evidence that he disparaged non-white people on a regular basis. With that, a whole theory was crafted. But what the theory always lacked was any evidence that the designer – and everyone else involved in a massive highway project – was making design decisions based on race.

And that is how the Left always does it. They create a theory and then find some nugget of fact to hang the whole thing on. The idea, for instance, that the conquest of North America was a deliberate attempt at genocide is based upon a letter written by a British general in which he suggests delivering the blankets of smallpox victims to the Natives. That it was a frustrated general at his wits end on trying to defeat wily Native warriors is left entirely out of the fact. He wasn’t trying to kill all Natives – he was trying to win a war. And the kicker is that it wouldn’t have worked – because that isn’t how smallpox spreads. The idea was based upon the very flawed idea of disease transmission back in those days. And that then gets you to understand the crucial aspect of the European conquest: it was European diseases, carried unknowingly by Europeans, which did the most damage. Most Natives who died of European disease never even laid eyes on an European. And this massive die-off caused gigantic social disruption among the survivors. They started to question their own ancestral ways – and swiftly started to adopt European ways to the maximum amount possible. By the time Lewis and Clark carried out the first American expedition to the west, the Native tribes way of life was massively and irretrievably changed from pre-Columbian times. But there is goes – and now it is pretty much being taught as fact in America’s schools: we came here to kill. Because we’re just rat bastards. Because we’re white.

Open Thread

I did a bit on the Barrett Brief this morning, talking politics and Shadow Army and as we discussed things, I went on a little mini-rant about what needs to be done with popular culture. What I said, boiled down, is that we can’t win unless we win the culture. Win all the elections you want, but if the culture is far left, far left will be the country. What I urged in response to that was this: if you’ve got an idea for a book, a movie, a song or a piece of art – DO IT. Don’t be afraid. I was terrified of putting out Mirrors. Afraid that people wouldn’t like it. Forget that. Just put it out there: give people what you have. Maybe you aren’t the great artist…but if you’ve got something to say, in whatever medium, say it. We need to flood the zone.

As those who have read so far know, what I’ve written is a story about normal, good people thrust into strange circumstances – but the key to it all is that they are normal, good people. Not perfect people, but not tortured super heroes with shameful pasts they are unable to come to terms with. Even when I set a character on a path to sin (Jerome, most especially – for a bit of a spoiler to those who have read only to, say, Battles at this time, he keeps on living; he’s in Book 7), the prospect of redemption is always there. The good guys are believers in God and in doing what is right even when it is hard. The books are family friendly (I’d say 12 and up); there is a tiny bit of salty language, but not much. No gross sexual scenes and even in the battle scenes, I don’t try to gross people out with gore. There is no woke SJW preaching. This is the sort of thing which we need to produce and keep producing until it starts to make its way into the general public. Maybe my books will mostly stay on shelves. No problem. But that its out there might inspire the next guy and maybe that will be the blockbuster which opens up the dam and allows a flood of socially conservative popular culture to flow.

Related: they are making a 5th Indiana Jones movie. With 78 year old Harrison Ford as the star. It is ridiculous. And this is really our opportunity. Not only is the Left out of ideas, but even when the recycle their old ideas, they are now injecting them with whatever is fashionable. I’ve finally binge-watched The Walking Dead and I’m on the last season…where we’ve now got a deaf character. I mean, seriously: how could a deaf person survive a Zombie apocalypse? The only way you can survive, at minimum, is hearing them coming so you can kill them or move away before they bite you. But you gotta have it, along with the gay and lesbian couples because, sure as heck, as the world ends what people will care about is making sure the last fads of the dead world keep going. I’m expecting the upcoming final season to add a few more SJW box-check characters. All we need at the start is something that is merely fun.

Joe Biden went to meet Putin for Lord only knows what reason – the whole world knows that Biden is senile and feeble and thus there is no hard center to American government. We’re getting bad policy, but that is more by accident…Biden’s aides are running the country, turning the crank at different times and at different speeds and what flows out was a mish-mash of liberal twaddle but even in that, there is no direction.

Inflation is rising fast and the Fed is saying they’ll jack up rate in 2023. It’ll be sooner than that, I bet, though 2023 would be best for us as it would create a 2024 recession just about assuring a GOP landslide. They get to pick their poison – jack up rates and send us into a tailspin, or hold off and watch inflation spike to 10% or more per year. Couldn’t happen to a nicer bunch of useless clowns.

Cocaine Mitch promises to block Biden’s judicial appointments if he becomes Majority Leader. Never get too mad at Mitch. Sure, he’s Deep State and Establishment…but he knows how to play hardball on the things which matter to us.

Hungary bans LGBT content for minors. This is fighting the Culture War.

Open Thread

I detect a slight note of panic among Never Trump – and both parts of it: that which rejected the GOP and joined the Democrats and that which merely rejected Trump. They are in a fright because Trump isn’t going away. Things are not working out the way they hoped…their hope having been that once he was defeated, the Trumpsters would, one way or another, agree to allow Never Trump to resume power in the GOP. That isn’t happening.

This is because they fundamentally misunderstand Trump and his supporters – with the crucial thing being that it is Trump supporters who are driving the cart. These Trump supporters may, indeed, swing behind DeSantis or someone else in 2024, but only in so far as DeSantis or whomever prove themselves Trumpist. What Never Trump still doesn’t get – though some come very close to understanding – that we’d really rather lose on MAGA than win on anything else, because to win on anything else is to lose, anyway. We’re all in. Do or die.

Florida bans Critical Race Theory in public schools – this is a growing trend on the right and it is the first sign of real health in our body politic in decades. As I’ve said before: CRT is evil and it must go. The Republic is incompatible with people believing CRT. This is, to be sure, causing some breach among black Conservatives – because there are some who hold that CRT, though flawed, has some real truth to impart. I reject this notion. And it must be rejected because the ultimate basis of CRT is Marxism, which is inherently wrong and an intrinsic evil. Nothing which uses Marx in any way can be good or true.

AG Garland is going to investigate the audit of the 2020 election in Arizona. This is proof that fraud decided the 2020 contest. They are terrified of the truth coming out.

Democrats are in a fury against Manchin (D-WV). I really did expect him to cave long before this – if he runs for re-election in 2024, it is better than even money he loses. He can’t ever get the Democrat nomination for President or VP, so his only political future if a cabinet post, and he only gets that if he plays ball with the national Democrats. But, he’s still not playing ball. Maybe, at the end of the day, he just doesn’t want any political future? After all, he’s got the Senate pension sowed and he’s going to make bank as a lobbyist (if he wants). It might be that he’s simply uninterested in wrecking the Republic just to please people in New York and Los Angeles who despise him.

Inflation is rising, fast. The only good news here is that a repeat of Carter might give us a repeat of 1980.

Obamunism! Food Inflation Starts to Hurt

From Zero Hedge:

Somehow even as all that deflation in home prices continues, like perfectly joined communicating vessels, countervailing inflation continues seeping into pretty much every other aspect of society. But don’t take our word for it, (or even gold’s, which is just under all time record notional highs): according to Rasmussen, “Americans nationwide continue to lose faith in the Federal Reserve Board to keep inflation under control, with the number who say they are paying more for groceries now at an all-time high.” Specifically, “93% of adults report paying more for groceries now than they did a year ago, the highest finding to date…

I still tend to agree with those who hold we are in a long-term, deflationary trend…but this doesn’t mean we can’t have short-term, inflationary spikes…like we’re having right now.  While oil prices have tumbled from their highs of the Spring, the fact remains that gasoline prices are still significantly higher than they were a year ago…and I don’t know about the rest of you, but I get sticker shock when I go grocery shopping.

All of this inflation is the result of Bernanke printing up money.  Remember, he did this so that he would have the money necessary to bail out the banksters – and all the money printing works out to picking your pocket.  The dollars you have, you see?, are now worth less…but those with things of actual value to sell simply cannot take less than fair value for their goods.  If they did, then they’d go out of business.  This means that everyone with things of real value to sell (gasoline or food, for instance) must charge more.  This isn’t price-gouging as liberal class-warfare talking points would have it…it is a logical, reasonable response to events.  In this case, the deliberate devaluing of our currency by our central bank in order that very rich people who run very large financial institutions shall not feel pain.

This is the final price of liberalism – our money being stolen by an agency of government so those most closely connected to government can be bailed out.  Bernanke bailed out the banks, Obama/Pelosi/Reid bailed out the unions…they were looking out for their own, and the rest of us got screwed in the process.  The cure is to end the relationship – and the primary means of doing that is to kill off Big Government, so that no corporation or union can, by manipulating government, gain the power to loot the people of their hard-earned wealth.

Gold to $1,600.00

Geesh – from MSNBC:

Gold prices rallied to record highs above $1,600 an ounce in Europe on Monday, as investors spooked by the euro zone debt crisis and the threat of a U.S. default bought into the metal as a haven from risk…

First off, really wish I had listened to the old man when he wanted to buy gold at $400 or so an ounce.  Secondly, this is the world of investment giving a vote of no confidence to all governments and central banks…this is a flight to safety, and a bet that things will get even worse.