Friday, September 28, 2018

A Test of My Culture of Complaint Theory

It is my belief that men have a Culture of Insult, that derives from the sense that honor in men is about the reputation for courage under fire. So a male insult is asking another man whether he really has the courage to stand and fight.

But women have a Culture of Complaint, that derives from the sense that honor in women is the reputation for chastity. (Chastity goes beyond mere sex to the general reputation for never having put a foot wrong.) So a female complaint is about another woman whose chastity is in question or about a man that threatened her chastity.

The central pillar of the Culture of Complaint is "sharing," where a woman shares her experience of some violation of her chastity. That is what all the talk about #BelieveAllWomen is about. A woman, any woman, must be allowed to "tell her story." And told she is a good little girl. And given a knowing and understanding look. And cheered up by an occasional "I can't believe he/she said/did that."

It is frequently said that men need to understand that when a woman "tells her story" she does not necessarily want anything done about it. She just wants to share, to reestablish, I suppose, her innocence and her chastity.

Is this the case with the liberal activist Christine Blasey Ford? Is all she wanted just the chance to "tell her story?" Who knows?

But also, what about all the enraged feminists? Are they satisfied and fulfilled now that the rape victim has had a chance to "tell her story?" Will their righteous rage now dissipate in the next few weeks now that Ford has "told her story" and the Republicans let a female rape prosecutor gently interrogate her instead of a bunch of judgmental white males?

According to my theory the fact that Ford was allowed to tell her story and was treated non-judgmentally by the Senate committee should in fact give the feminists what they wanted, and it should in fact result in reduced turnout for Democrats in November.

We shall see.

But think of the bigger picture. Is it not completely obvious now that the Victorians were right and that women want and expect a big strong patriarch to protect them and care for them and send unsuitable suitors away and listen indulgently when they "share" some outrageous indignity and attack on their innocence and purity.

So away with the sexual revolution, away with co-ed dorms, away with hook-up culture, away with abortion on demand, away with the horrid danger of the corporate workplace, away with unchaperoned teenagers, away with sexting. And hey, how about away with leggings that encourage foolish young women to shake their booties at undeserving men.

Right girls?

But I still maintain that the bigger question is: what about lower-class women. Everything about the current controversy and everything about the feminist agenda is really all about well-born women and the height of their pedestals. Earth to feminists: well-born women have always been treated with care and respect. Obviously, because they are protected by powerful men.

What about the checker at the supermarket? What about lower-class women tangled in the welfare culture? What about working-class mothers? What about married Christian women with children?

What Republicans and conservatives should understand is that there is nothing in all the current blatheroo that speaks to anyone except well-born women that went to exclusive private schools and went on to get sociology and psychology degrees and ended up as therapists.

What about real women in the real world? There's a huge opportunity out there for some Trump-type character.

Because lower-class women are just as neglected by the ruling class as the famous white working class of which we've heard tell.

Thursday, September 27, 2018

Spineless Cowards and Performing Seals

If the GOP in Congress are a bunch of "spineless cowards," as proposed by Eric Lendrum, for cringing before the lefty feminist activists, what does that make the Democratic senators?

See, I think that the Democratic Party has been just as badly deformed by the current Feminist Awakening as the Republican Party. No, the Dems have been hardest hit.

See, whereas the GOP RINOs have merely failed to defend the ordinary deplorables of America from the well-born left-wing activists of the activism culture, the Democrats have to make like the activists playing dress-up in polar bear suits and Handmaid costumes.

Let us not forget that all these folks are elected politicians. Getting elected is what they do, and what they know best.

Evidently, for a GOPer, the best way to get reelected is not to rock too many boats, and especially to avoid a media feeding frenzy over some protected class of helpless victims. That is why the Dems keep returning to the tactic of stirring up feminist abortion activists when a GOP president sends a Supreme Court nominee up to the Hill. It's pretty easy to rile up those well-born women into a witch-hunt frenzy over abortion. They have been carefully taught to believe that without abortion the world as we know it will end. And most women believe what they have been carefully taught: I think it is in the genes.

For a Democrat the rules are different. Unless they completely support the activists and recite their #BelieveAllWomen lines, they are dead meat at the next election, or might be. It is said that 85-year-old Diane Feinstein needs to up her activist game to win against lefty Kevin de León in her Senate reelection in November.

Never mind the question of what an 85-year-old that has been in the Senate since 1993 is doing running for reelection, given that she will be over 90 when her term is over. I mean, come on!

So I'd say that both GOP and Dem elected politicians are chained to the mast. GOPers must play moderate or lose mushy moderate voters in their reelection fights. Dems must seem to be brave souls telling truth to power like the true activists they are, some activistier politician will beat them in a primary. And this must go on until the current left-wing wave crashes on the beach and dissipates.

Remember this: The left has got pretty well everything it every wanted. Workers have their benefits; women have their abortion; blacks have their government jobs; gays have their marriage. The only chaps that don't yet have what they want are Muslims and illegal aliens.

So really, all the Dem activist groups could close up shop and go home. But political groups never do that. So what are they to do? The answer is obvious: what they have always done, which is to whip up rage and hysteria and insist that the world is ending, unless!

When does an activist group fold up and go home?

I suppose that the answer in our time is when the group becomes an embarrassment to the ruling class and helps elect the opposition. Again and again. That's how the Democrats purged themselves of the Sixties activists, when Republican had won 5 presidential elections out of 6 in a row. Then it was the world-historical role of Barack Obama to restart the whole process with his encouragement of 21st century progressives.

Hmm. That leads right into my "little darlings" theory. That eventually all the identity groups that the ruling class has loved and cherished end up cast away like any ageing mistress. The score so far: the workers cast aside in 1971 when All in the Family made Archie Bunker into a racist sexist bigot; blacks cast aside by Barack Obama who did nothing for blacks but everything for well-born lefty activists like him.

I'd say that women are next. Maybe ordinary middle-class women will find that the feminism of well-born women does nothing for them. Seriously. Suppose you are a woman deep in the bowels of the health-care world with hard-earned qualifications allowing you a fairly secure job as a nurse's aide. What do you think about the tender sensibilities of prep-school women recovering memories after 30 years?

And on to the bigger question? What does politics -- and secular religion -- become when all the current crop of victims have passed their sell-by dates?

I have to admit that I have no idea.

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Leftism is a Religion

I was talking with a friend that remarked about a guy that got to be all religious in middle age. Yes, I said, but what about his sister, who is a solid lefty? Leftism is a religion, too.

And how, Brett Kavanaugh.

If you understand that leftism is a religion, just like Christianity, Judaism, Hinduism, the Roman gods, the Greek gods, and the gods and spirits of the hunter-gatherers, then everything over the past couple of months makes sense.

It helps if you understand that politics and religion have a natural tendency to dance with each other. Put it this way: if religion is about the question of the meaning of life, the universe, and everything, then it is natural for religion to enlist the help of politics -- the protection of the community from existential perils -- in the fight against evil that threatens the life of the community.

Except that the fight against evil can sometimes get a bit out of hand. Our Founders were among those that felt so, and the reason was that in the Reformation, which extended, let us say, from Luther's 95 Theses in 1517 to the Treaty of Westphalia in 1648, the argument over good and evil resulted in a war in Germany that occasioned the death of about one-third of the population. Oh and don't forget the English Civil War from 1642-1651. Not Good.

As the dust settled, a bunch of smart folks set to work to make sure that, as we would say, "this never happens again." There was Thomas Hobbes that argued for a strong central authority to stop people squabbling. But then there was John Locke that argued for a separation between Church and State to stop religion from using state power to enforce its truth and politicians from using religious truth to stop the mouths of the opposition. And Montesquieu that developed the idea of separating the power of government into three branches each with equal but different powers.

These were the notions swirling in the minds of our Founders. They wanted a government powerful enough to protect people from other governments, but not so powerful that it would harness religion into a religious war like the wars of the previous century. If you read the Federalist Papers you will read men who had studied all the "issues" of the time and who were arguing that the proposed US Constitution was justified in that it created a federal government powerful enough to stand against the Powers of Europe but not so powerful that it would repeat the terrors of the religious wars of the Reformation.

The US Constitution was ratified on June 21, 1789. But guess what. The French Revolution commenced just a few weeks later, on July 14, 1789, climaxing in the Reign of Terror and Virtue from September 1793 to July 1794.

The French Revolution inaugurated the great counterargument against the notion of limited government, separation of powers and of church and state. It proposed a new (or rather old) doctrine that the only way to effect justice in this world is through the power of politics and government.

That is why I call the Leftist movement the Great Reaction that wants to roll back the Lessons Learned from the Reformation and unite once more the power of government and religion, to unite force and truth. Only this time the religion would be the secular religion of leftism consequent upon the Death of God.

The main Lesson Learned from the Reformation, as I understand it, is that the admixture of government and church is a poisonous brew that leads to death and disaster every time it is tried. And I think it is fair to note that the French Revolution, the Bolshevik Revolution, the Maoist Revolution, etc., were notable for death and misery and starvation, because they combined government and the new secular religion of leftism.

Back in the day our liberal friends were gloriously confident of their wisdom and evolution. They celebrated plays like The Crucible about the Salem Witch Trials from which we were to understand the danger of Puritanism run amok. And then they taught us to understand the evil of the McCarthy witch hunts from which we were to understand that the wild accusations of Communists in the State Department were not to be countenanced in an enlightened country. And of course Margaret Atwood's Handmaid's Tale published in 1985 at the height of the Religious Right in the US is supposed to remind us what happens when the religious nutcases get into power.

Yet today we have our liberal friends hip-deep in a conspiracy theory of Russian Collusion between the Trump presidential campaign and the Putin government in Russia. We have our liberal friends perfectly content to anathematize a nominee to the US Supreme Court based on questionable accusations about an event alleged to have occurred 35 years ago. We have our liberal friends insisting we #BelieveAllWomen. We have a woman US Senator telling men to shut up. We have our Silicon Valley friends routinely de-platforming all manner of people for committing what the left considers Hate Speech.

All without the slightest trace of irony.

But of course. Because our liberal friends are idiots. They know nothing, have read nothing, have thought about nothing except what they have been carefully taught in schools, universities, and the mainstream media.

So here we drag in the usual squibs, that "those that cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it." And "that history repeats itself, first as tragedy, then as farce."

So let me just say this to my liberal friends.

You may think that you are the helpless victims of the world and that well-born women that went to college are most grievously sinned against. But I would say that you need to analyze power this way. If a liberal says the wrong thing, do they get humiliated and fired? If a black person insults a white person at work, do they get fired? If a gay fires a straight at work for "bigotry" does it become a national scandal?

You see, the purpose of electoral politics is not to help the powerful pursue their dreams of justice, liberals. Instead it is to provide the opposition with a way to organize against perceived injustice by means short of civil war. For it is a rule of life that the ruling class usually has no clue and little interest in how its rule is experienced by people on the receiving end of its religious truths and its government force.

What do men think right now about well-born liberal women and their accusations? Has any liberal asked them? What do ordinary mothers think about what might happen to their husband or son if some well-born liberal woman decides to launch an accusation against them? Has a liberal ever asked them?

Maybe the men of America don't have a problem with the current feminist #MeToo movement. Maybe mothers are first of all concerned about women's rights rather than the rights of their husbands and sons.

All I know is that 50 years ago liberals had the bit in their teeth in The Sixties, and were then staggered to find that the Silent Majority didn't like the New Politics one bit.

In due course we will find out what the Americans of today think about all this. And I have to say that right now I don't have a clue what they think and how they will vote about it.

However, I would advise my liberal friends to think very carefully about what is coming down. And the beginning of wisdom is to understand that progressive political beliefs are a secular religion.

For, after Roy Rappaport: “No society known to anthropology or history is devoid of what reasonable observers would agree is religion[.]”

And that means you, liberals. You are just as religious as any religious nutcase on the Sawdust Trail. Only you chaps don't call your beliefs and your "values" religion. You think you are above all that.

Let me just say this. When you run down the catchphrases on the #WeBelieve yardsigns,
what you are reading is a set of Theses of Belief: religious beliefs.
SignsOfJustice We Believe Yard Sign
#WeBelieve is what liberal women believe. It is their religious faith. Until you understand that you do not understand what is going on here in these United States in these last days of September 2018.

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

How Do You Get Voters to End the Habits of a Lifetime?

The point about politics, I think, is that the meaning of "revolution" is not what the left thinks, the brave activists getting in the face of Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) at a Washington DC restaurant. It has more to do with this:
I grew up in a small town in rural New England, which has long been a stronghold for Democrats. My grandfather was a carpenter, and for many years as a boy, my father was, too. Several of my family members are or used to be members of labor unions, and many of them have for years consistently and exclusively voted for Democratic candidates.
Democrats showed that they were not longer the party of the working man in 1971 when Archie Bunker debuted on TV. Archie was no longer the salt of the earth, as we had been taught, but a racist, sexist bigot.
For much of my young life, their commitment to the Democratic Party had puzzled me... And the older I get, the greater the divide grows between what Democratic voters in small towns and cities across the country think they’re getting from the politicians they vote for and the actual policies being proposed and implemented by Democrats.
Yes, why do people keep voting for people that have stopped representing their values?

The answer is pretty simple. Most people don't pay much attention to politics. They acquire a party loyalty at some point in their life because of a major event -- such as the Great Depression, or The Sixties -- and they don't really change unless confronted by catastrophe.

Thus, in the small New England towns, people kept voting Democrat because that is what people like them did. After all, the Democrats were the party of the working man, right?

In fact, of course, people are tribal, and their loyalty is to their tribe. In the old days, tribes were tribes of the kindred, people related by blood, but ever since the dawn of agriculture, and more so since the industrial revolutions, people have been joined together by "fake" tribalism, an imaginary tribe unified by some notion other than close blood relationship.

In our day there are many fake tribalisms on offer, from the tribe of nation to the tribe of language to the left's preferred cocktail of race, gender, and class tribalism.

The reason that Donald Trump got to be president is that he broke through the stasis in the Rust Belt in which people voted their class status as members of the worker tribe, and called people over to a national US tribe, as in Make America Great Again.

Now I see a lot of people on the Right proposing a "white" nationalism, or a cultural nationalism, or some other way of creating a new fake tribe. But I don't see any notion better than Trump's American nationalism, which is nothing more than appealing to the great ordinary middle class that really doesn't identify with anything other than America.

The power of the Trump idea is that it fits today's political alignment. The Democrats represent the educated class that believes itself way above the tawdry idea of "nation." And it represents the newcomers to the city that identify with their ethnic or racial group rather than with the nation itself.

But obviously there is a borderland between the educated globalist elite and the ordinary middle class on the one hand, and the ordinary middle class and the ethnic enclaves on the other hand. The job of a politician like Trump is to advance the border between the educated and the ordinary on the one hand, and the ordinary and the ethnic on the other.

Now, I would say -- OK, I hope -- that the antics of the feminist #MeToos and the folks that ambushed Sen. Cruz would be expanding the border of the ordinary into the educated class. I would say that the ordinary middle class person, even including folks in the professions, really does not cotton to the activist culture of the left.

And I would say that you can expand the border of the ordinary into the ethnic enclaves by expanding economic opportunity and getting them solidly into the middle-class economy.

So I argue that people will vote for the same party forever, unless something comes along and jolts them.

Has anyone got a better idea?

Monday, September 24, 2018

Can't We All Just Get Along?

In a piece defending Kavanaugh, Schrab Ahman writes:
I wish I could say that the way out of this impasse is for the right to double down on the gentle conservatism represented by Romney, the Bush dynasty, and the late John McCain. Perhaps that is the right course in the long term. But for now, it is imperative for the health of American democracy to resist the liberal ruthlessness that is on display in the halls of the Senate.
And then we can get back to normal government, defending the law and helping Americans live their lives productively.

But actually this hope is a dead letter. It is as false as the idea that "we" are in favor of facts and reason and "they" are just acting out their feelings.

In fact all of us, from "we" to "they" see the world through our feelings, or rather, our values. And that gets to be a problem as soon as we get to government, because the natural thing to do is to write the law to give expression to our values, or to be more specific, our religion.

Here in the United States we have decreed a separation between church and state. But of course everyone still presses their religious view and tries to get the government to confirm their values with force. I quoted Robert Heinlein a few days ago.
It is a truism that almost any sect, cult, or religion will legislate its creed into law if it acquires the political power to do so, and will follow it up by suppressing opposition, subverting all education to seize the minds of the young, and by killing, locking up, and driving underground all heretics.
Right now, it is a truism that our lefty friends have acquired the power to "legislate its creed into law" thanks to the notion of the "living Constitution" and liberal justices that believe in enacting liberal values into law using the court.

And of course the whole circus around Supreme Court nominations reflects the huge investment that our liberal friends have made in the power to legislate their creed into law, and the frightening prospect that what the Supreme gives the Supreme Court can take away. Living Constitutions, baby.

Even if the conservative "originalist" movement should succeed in returning the Court to a traditional notion of legal review, the problem is still there. People want their values to reign not just in their household, not just in their neighborhood, but everywhere.

Back in the day, liberals felt themselves to be a minority, culturally, and they used to complain bitterly about the religious right "legislating morality." Well, now we have #WeBelieve yardsigns all over my liberal Seattle neighborhood, expressing liberal values and implicitly demanding their instantiation in legislation. For instance, the slogan "No human is illegal" is a moral statement that demands unlimited immigration. In other words, liberals want to legislate morality.

The whole liberal agenda, from gay marriage to climate change, is really a sect of secular religion attempting to "legislate its creed into law." And, of course the sect is busy "seiz[ing] the minds of the young" in the schools and in the culture.

The fact is that we can never go back to the "gentle conservatism" of Romney, Bush and McCain. Because everyone wants their moral universe, at the very least, to be respected by the political power, and preferably, endorsed by the political power. And that includes conservatives and deplorables.

The Founders of this country attempted, by the separation of powers of government, and what I call the Greater Separation of Powers between the political, the economic and the moral/cultural sectors, to restrain the enthusiasm of everyone to legislate their creed into law. But at the same time as they were writing the Constitution and the Bill of Rights the French Revolution broke out and inaugurated the totalitarian impulse to combine all sectors of society into the political. We know that this is a bad idea, because it brought us the murderous Soviet Union, Communist China, not to mention Hitler's Reich and Mussolini's Fascism: "Everything within the state, nothing outside the state, nothing against the state."

You would think that everyone would have got the message about the evil of combining all powers, cultural, political, and economic, into the government. But people still want to enact our own vision of Heaven here on Earth. Of course we do, because we are the good guys.

So conservatives and other similarly inclined folk need to combine into a new, muscular cultural movement and push back against the left's secular religion with our own secular religion that pushes pretty firmly for our moral agenda, and rallies a coalition of Americans to the polls to elect politicians that agree to stand up for us and protect us. There is no alternative.

Friday, September 21, 2018

Making Sense of Lefty Craziness

My whole life is devoted to exposing and explaining the phenomenon of the Left. After all, in the last two centuries, humans in the US have increased their per capita income by 30 times. And right now the folks in the historically dominant cultures of China and India are catching as as fast as they know how. See my Great Enrichment page. Scroll down to the bottom and look at India and China.

But what did it? The evidence is pretty clear. It is the social cooperation of the market and its prices that did it.

But why now? Why the last 200 years and not a millennium earlier? My judgement is that the industrial revolution represents an absolute watershed in human social cooperation. Before the industrial revolution only one thing mattered: food-growing land, and the ability to defend it from predators. So the most important thing in the world was the ability to have armed men to defend and protect that land and its people from all the world.

Thus village Big Men, warrior aristocracies, patriarchy, armies, marcher lords and their glorification in palaces and temples and jewel-encrusted magnificence. Because they were absolutely needed.

Of course these warrior elites monstrously abused their roles: hey, who doesn't. But they were vital. And you can see why, from my justification of government power.
Every warrant for government power requires the existence of an existential peril for which force is the only solution.
When the whole world depends on keeping its food-growing land from pirates and plunderers, then it is pretty obvious that the only thing that matters is an armed defense.

But suppose the day came when the existential peril of someone snitching our food-growing land went away? Without an "existential peril" there is no need for government power; people can just go about their business. If anyone has a problem, they can go to the courts, or get together with other people and work out an agreement to solve the problem.

Now that land doesn't matter any more, because food is cheap and being transported across the world in huge grain-ships, now there is a lot less "existential peril" to worry about.

So what should the robin do then, poor thing? What are warrior elites and government leaders and would-be saviors going to do? The answer is obvious: make it up; think up some existential peril that needs the application of force, make it up out of whole cloth if you have to, and then go out and terrify the populace into supporting some new expansion of government power, and provide work for desk warriors and left-wing activists.

Of course, not all existential perils are fake. Here's one that is real: urban gangs. The growth of cities in the wake of the industrial revolution brought a lot of people to the city who had not yet learned the bourgeois ethos of buying and selling and live and let live. So they settled into ethnic enclaves in city slums and the young men formed criminal gangs to protect the ethnic turf, just as they had from time immemorial. But to the rest of society these ethnic enclaves and their gang defenders looked (and look to this day) as an existential threat to the peace of the city. That's how the Brits came to legislate the Metropolitan Police Act of 1829 for London. You can understand why Sir Robert Peel brought this legislation to the House of Commons just by reading a bit of Dickens and learning about Bill Sykes and Fagin and other colorful urban characters.

These ethnic enclaves of recently arrived immigrants to the city and their associated gangs have persisted up to the present moment, because humans are still moving off the land into the city. In the US we now have the notorious Salvadorean gang MS-13 that  goes along with immigrant Salvadorean enclaves. In London they now have Muslim gangs operating out of the East End slums that used to by Cockney slums and are now Muslims enclaves. Ordinary middle-class people want protection from these newly-arrived immigrants to the city whose culture is, from the middle-class point of view, atavistic.

By the way, there is nothing remarkable about urban criminal gangs. They operate just like any other "armed minority, occupying territory, and taxing the inhabitants to reward their supporters." The only irregular thing about them is that they are rival governments operating inside the boundaries of nation states. Clearly, in many urban areas, the traditional politicians have developed a modus operandi with the criminal gangs about which we are not supposed to inquire.

OK, so city policing is warranted because criminal gangs are an existential peril, not to mention an insult to the traditional government. But what about everything else?

I think that "everything else" is pretty well a ginned up fake "existential peril."

And the thing is that once you have persuaded people of one existential peril then you pretty soon find out that you need another existential peril to get the punters to the voting booth. The obvious way to do this is to raise ordinary day-to-day problems to the level of a National Crisis. If you don't do this crisis mongering then pretty soon people don't think that they really need quite so much government -- or at least quite so much taxes.

This is why I characterize the Left as a Great Reaction. It is a cultural movement that cannot get its arms around the fact that we live in a pretty safe and secure world and we don't need government force to solve all our problems. Yes, but. We humans are programmed to know that the world is full of existential problems. Any hunter-gatherer tribe can tell you about the creepy-crawlies in the rain forest, and the dangerous predatory animals, and then there is the dangerous predatory tribe next door.

Ask yourself: how do we humans learn how to live in a peaceable world in which we do not have to be on our guard every moment against the dawn raid from the neighboring tribe. Answer: it's going to take a while.

And in the period of transition we are going to be assailed by would-be noble warriors insisting that the world is going to end unless we all come together to Save the Planet.

Here is my big beef about government today. Many government programs amount to cultural barriers to learning how to live as an independent responsible citizen in the city.

Government pension programs discourage people from learning how to save and take advantage of the capital markets to start a business or build wealth.

Government healthcare programs discourage people from deciding just how much they want to save for end-of-life and how much they are prepared to let nature take its course.

Government education programs sidestep the question of just what each of us wants to do and/or should do to prepare our children for the adult world. For instance, home-schooling seems  to encourage children to find their own way to adulthood. Private schools for the professional class are all about preparing children of the professional class for entry to selective colleges and careers in the professional class. But public government schools? You tell me what they are all about today.

Do you see what I am saying? I am saying that most government social programs are interventions that prevent the poor and the immigrant from learning the script of the middle-class city.

And I think that is a crime against humanity.

Meanwhile, the left serves up existential panics, from day to day. Women suffering from sexual harassment! Gays from homophobia! Women earning less than men! Transgenders without the right bathroom! Carbon dioxide going to fry the Earth!

The whole point of the left's helpless victims is to create a sense of existential peril and a warrant for government action. Because if there is no existential peril there is no warrant for government action.

And maybe there isn't even a need for an educated, evolved national or global elite.

Thursday, September 20, 2018

The Fault, Dear Liberals, is Not In Your Stars

When Cassius was trying to push Brutus to pull the trigger on their little Caesarian coup, he famously said:
The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars
But in ourselves, that we are underlings.
And the fault, dear liberals, is not that you chaps don't have a majority on the Supreme Court, or the Senate or the House or Hillary Clinton in the White House.

The fault is in yourselves, that you believe in the gods of politics.

It is fascinating, is it not, that immediately after the Brits and then the Yanks built a politics on the notion of the limitation of political power the Frenchies immediately tried the opposite, with a revolution that combined all power -- political, economic, cultural, and military -- in the state, even though the primary advocate of the separation of powers was their very own Montesquieu.

How's that totalitarian (i.e., totalizing all power in the ruling class) working out, lefties? How did it work out in the Soviet Union? In China? In Cambodia? In Cuba? In Venezuela?

Yeah. We all agree that it didn't work too well in Germany. National Socialism, they called it. "Socialism in One Country" is what Stalin called it.

And so began the modern cult of political activism, that what is needful is that "we" -- enlightened, educated people like us -- should be given the reins of political power so that we can transform a corrupt society into a realm of peace and justice.

I'm here to say that I don't think it has worked, any of it.

I don't think the government social welfare programs started by Bismarck were a good idea. It would have been much better if the workers had built their own social welfare organizations. They were working on it, you know, back in the 19th century, with labor unions, friendly societies, and fraternal organizations. I wonder what all that would look like today if we have left them all in peace.

I'm skeptical about government education. You want government to do things that never change, because government is terrible at doing reform. Clearly, education of children today would not look like education when half the population was illiterate. Or most people went from high school into the local factory. How should we educate children today? Bueller? Anyone?

I'm skeptical about the civil rights revolution. I certainly believe that government should be forbidden to discriminate on the basis of race and sex. Anyway, what we have today is not race-blind, sex-blind government, but government that actively and deliberately discriminates on the basis of race and sex, because diversity and inclusion. How did that happen, anyway?

I'm skeptical about the sexual revolution, because it clearly demoralizes and victimizes women. That is why feminists are insisting that girls are helpless victims that men must be carefully taught to observe the rules about sexual contact -- just like the Victorian gentleman of whom we've heard tell. And as for abortion, I'd say that a woman that can't say No to sex, because everyone else is giving it away, is obviously going to insist on saying No to an unwanted baby.

And as for "political correctness" and postmodernism, I'd say that it is the final stage in a failed millennial cult that has been predicting the end of the world and is still trying to patch up its failed millennarianism after the End of the World date has come and gone. Our faith is the One True Faith! Of course it is! And anyone that disagrees is a witch and a heretic, a racist, sexist homophobe!

See, here's how I look at it. If the government is going to look after us, from cradle to grave, where is the dignity of responsibility and self-reliance? Where even is the nobility in charitable giving?

If the government is going to adjudicate all questions of discrimination in the private sector, where is the virtue is treating other people as you would like yourself to be treated, of taking a flier on a minority youth of questionable past?

And if we are all forced to be members of the state secular religion of political correctness, what happens if that religion is a false religion? And how would we tell? I just finished a book of short novels by Robert A. Heinlein, at the end of which he remarks:
It is a truism that almost any sect, cult, or religion will legislate its creed into law if it acquires the political power to do so, and will follow it up by suppressing opposition, subverting all education to seize the minds of the young, and by killing, locking up, and driving underground all heretics.
OK, so he got it wrong. It is driving underground all heretics on social media, then locking them up, then killing them. In that order. And don't you forget it.

Yet what we know from modern science and from the Great Enrichment of the last 200 years is that all "change" comes from heretics and rebels, from the one lucky guy, some nobody among a hundred people trying something new, that comes up with something useful.

So let us hope that what we are seeing in our politics right now is the existential panic of a ruling class and its supporters that cannot believe that their comfortable assumption of their virtue and their faith in politics, that all is melting into air, and that the end of their hegemony, is coming, closer than you think.

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

What Women Want: Running the Clock Back

It is pretty obvious that well-born women are batting on a bit of a sticky wicket these days. The #MeToo and #BelieveAllWomen hashtags, not to mention the "Campus Rape" issue demonstrate that, at least for well-born women of good families that go to private schools and select colleges and end up in the professions, all is not well.

In part this is, as Georg Simmel wrote over a century ago, that the public square was constructed by men for men centuries ago. But what about women?

Let us merely consider the British Common Law that has developed all kinds of precedents about every kind of legal situation, including the question of rape. If an accusation is made in the legal system, what are the rules? In fact there is a forest of rules about everything, all of which may be found to have originated in some legal dispute decades or centuries ago. But those rules were developed by men over legal disputes in which the judge and the contesting attorneys were all men.

What if there had been women in that process all those years ago? Would the precedents have been different? Of course they would. You can see this merely by thinking about my notion of the male Culture of Insult versus the female Culture of Complaint. Clearly, I would say, the legal system is a regularization and civilizing of the male Culture of Insult which used to decide disputes by single combat and lex talionis. Suppose the legal system had been instead a regularization and softening of the female Culture of Complaint. It is said, for instance, that when women complain to their husbands about something they don't want him to actually do something about the complaint; they just want to register the complaint.

Is this true about the complainant against Supreme Court nominee Kavanaugh? Is this a female complaint, as per the Culture of Complaint? Does she just want her pain and her rage at her humiliation decades ago to be registered and acknowledged by society? And if we adjust our justice system to accommodate the female Culture of Complaint what then? Would it still work?

We have, in fact, implemented the female Culture of Complaint in response the to campus "Rape Crisis," by removing the presumption of innocence and the right of the accused to confront the accuser. Many people say that the result has been monstrous injustice. But if the standard for the public square is to accommodate the female Culture of Complaint then the open outcry of accusation and defense, which seem to belong to the male Culture of Insult, would need to be modified.

But wait. We could say that the female Culture of Complaint is an artifact of the patriarchy where women had no formal power and were forced to get their way by subterfuge and manipulation. If women are to come into the public square maybe there is no option other than to act as a responsible actor and accept the give and take of the public square and the male-developed and male-modified Culture of Insult.

And yet, if we accept the settled science that women score higher in "agreeableness" while men score higher in "aggressiveness" then clearly women are at a disadvantage in a public institution when a sexual advance is made or a need for aggressive action is warranted. Does this mean that a woman should never be alone with a man in a public institution to protect her from sexual aggression? Should she always have an advocate in salary negotiations to provide an aggression assist?

My own view is that the sexual revolution plus feminism has tied women in knots. After all, if there is the Pill and abortion, then why not Do It? Well, the answer is "women's pain." Women just do not approach sex as men do. According to the settled science, women experience emotional pain and anxiety more than men do. They experience severe emotional pain at any sexual breakup, whether an alcohol-fueled one-night stand or a "relationship" that is terminated by a man "not yet ready for marriage" or the end of a 20-year marriage. In the old days these realities were accommodated by prohibitions against pre-marital sex, especially by naive girls, the protection of girls from exposure to sexual situations, the difficulty of avoiding conception, the danger of abortion, and the barriers against divorce.

Complicating this is the quick-and-dirty way that liberals have implemented their sexual agenda using the US Supreme Court, with Roe v. Wade on abortion and Obergefell v. Hodges on gay marriage. As I understand, the Court was surprised that its Roe v. Wade decision provoked such backlash.

Yeah. Did anyone ever ask non-well-born women what they thought about abortion? Or the sexual revolution in general? How about minority women? What do they think about all this?

The fact is that morals and ethics and politics and the like are all games that ruling-class people play with each other. They typically call on the lower orders as their foot-soldiers in their ruling-class power games but really don't spend too much time figuring out the needs and desires of their political foot-soldiers. After who really cares about what the lower orders think?

My feeling is that we have only just begun to deal with the emergence of women into the public square, and that nobody, least of all women, have a clue "what women want."

It is also true that we have only just begun to deal with the fact of the end of the agricultural age, and the related mega-migration to the cities.

And it is a mere 10,000 years since the dawn of agriculture, and we humans, according to the psychologists, are still basically programmed as hunter-gatherers.

But then, if we had everything figured out, what would be the point of life, the universe and everything?

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Fumblegate: Beginning of the End or End of the Beginning

In a way it is iconic. A liberal woman pysch. professor lifts a 35-year-old sexual humiliation into the latest battle over the Supreme Court.

And how did it come to light? Because she raised the issue in couples counselling in 2012. Forgive my cynicism, but I read couples counselling as a power play by a woman who is not sufficiently persuaded that her "partner" acknowledges her complete supremacy in the relationship. So bringing up a sexual harassment episode from high school would be a really cool tactical play. But really! Everyone knows that memories are totally unreliable, because we embroider them over the years.

For instance, I like to say that my departed father used to preface remarks with "at my advanced age." But my daughter tells me I am wrong. My dad said something similar, but not those exact words.

But how do you deal with an accusation like this, given that you really cannot treat a woman accuser like you could a man and subject him to second-degree cross-examination? Because the patriarchy. The Zman has the answer:
All of this reminds me of something I’ve noticed when dealing with feminist women. The best thing is to dominate them... In the company of feminists, I often begin talking about repealing the 19th Amendment. I’m polite, but firm. The results are always positive.
And then move on and cancel the sexual revolution, and abortion on demand, and no-fault divorce, and gay marriage and everything else that is a distraction from the basic job of men and women: getting kids on the ground and then out of the nest, with a regular supply of food and clothing during the years in-between and an occasional application of Murdstonian "firmness" just to make it fair.

My first boss always complained that we software guys were always "going off on tangents."  Ain't that the truth: anything but getting on with the difficulties of the real job we are supposed to be doing.

OK. So GOP senators can't question the cosmic truth of a 35-year-old smear. But maybe President Trump can. After all, no pussy-hat feminist is going to vote for him anyway.

But, having got over my rage at Democrat perfidy, I return to my basic message. When a political movement is descending to Borking and smears it is not a sign that it is winning but that it is flailing around wondering what went wrong. That is the message of Anatomy of Revolution by Crane Brinton.

Brinton argues that revolutions get to their Reign of Terror and Virtue stage because the revolution is failing to transform the world as promised. So the moderate revolutionaries get replaced by the Robespierres, and the Kerenskys by the Lenins and the Stalins. And they resort to the tactics of the World War I generals: one more Big Push should get us to the Promised Land.

So in our own Reign of Twitter and Virtue-Signalling (tee-hee) the message we should be getting is that the project of the left is failing, and so the natural response of the left is to amp it up, to search for heretics, to burn witches. For it cannot be that their whole world view is a lie and a Great Reaction back to the culture and politics of the agricultural age and its slavery and its rigid social hierarchy and its grinding poverty.

And don't forget that the Supreme Court is the holy of holies for the progressive project, for it has enabled the progressives to enact their agenda outside of the to-and-fro of democratic politics and its messy compromises and its need to persuade rather than bully. And yet, having built their house upon sand they are horrified to discover that they are always one vote away from Hurricane Donald coming in and wiping their ill-founded notions away with the tide.

Remember this: if the liberals lose the Supreme Court they lose everything. And if you think that Post-election Stress Disorder is a thing, you ain't seen nothing yet.

Monday, September 17, 2018

My Take: Ten Years after the Crash

It was September 15, 2008 that the financial services firm Lehman Brothers collapsed and the Federal Reserve Board, Ben Bernanke, proprietor, decided not to bail it out.

Then followed the worst financial crash in the United States of America since the Great Crash of 1929. Look: crashes and panics are part of capitalism, in the same way that invasions and famines are part of agriculture. Oh, and slavery. I'd says that panics and crashes and the subsequent recessions are the better option. But I am biased.

So who was to blame? Greedy bankers? Evil Wall Street firms? Derivatives brokers? Regulators asleep at the switch? Smarmy politicians? Or all of the above?

The following is my individual, idiosyncratic analysis. Your mileage may vary.

The first thing to understand is the message of Walter Bagehot's Lombard Street. La Wik's page here. Bagehot wrote the book after the Panic of 1866 following the failure of Overton, Gurney, and Company, "a wholesale discount bank located at 65 Lombard Street, London". During the crisis the Bank of England was unable to stop the panic with loans from its own resources, so it had to be backed up by the UK government.

For me, the message of Bagehot's book is his analysis of the credit system, that is, borrowings in money-denominated securities. The fact is that the credit system is a maze of borrowings to and fro, so when a question arises about the "soundness" of a financial firm -- such as Lehman or Overton -- the people buying and selling in the credit markets start to wonder. They ask themselves how deep their own counterparties were invested in the debt securities of the failed firm. And they get cautious; they wonder if they will get paid. Hello credit crisis.

So Bagehot decreed that two things are necessary for a healthy financial system. First, securities must be properly collateralized so that they can be liquidated without loss to the lender. Second, borrowers must be able to service the loan. If either of these are in question, you gotta panic.

In the boom of the 2000s there were lots of insufficiently collateralized loans which couldn't be fully liquidated if the borrower defaulted, and there were lots of borrowers that really couldn't service their loans. So when the housing market peaked in 2006 there were a lot of insufficiently collateralized mortgages around. Not good.

But why were there all those bad mortgages and "liar loans" to people with bad credit? Greedy bankers? Not exactly. Regulators asleep at the switch? Come on! When do regulators ever do their job?

The second thing to understand about the crash is that it had been federal government policy ever since the Great Depression to subsidize the housing market, to help Americans become homeowners.

One of the policies to help this out was the 30-year fixed mortgage. Hello sanity? You mean to say that you can forecast the economy and the housing market out 30 years and still have a solid security? Before the Great Depression the most you could get was a 10-year mortgage with a balloon payment at the end which meant that you would have to refinance at the then going interest rate.

Plus the government in 1938 started up the Federal National Mortgage Association, a government-sponsored enterprise that issued bonds based on baskets of mortgages. No problem, right, particularly if Fannie Mae bought good solid well-collateralized mortgages? Well, it all started out pretty nice, but then things got a bit out of hand, as this chart from of Agency Debt, mostly Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, shows.

Golly. Who knew! Agency Debt went from nothing to 10 percent of GDP in 1980, then all the way to 55 percent of GDP when the crash came in 2008. Now remember, the federal debt is about 100 percent of GDP. So here we have an additional 50 percent of GDP effectively guaranteed by the federal government. What could go wrong?

And as the years went by the quality of Agency debt went down, as various federal mandates required banks to extend mortgages to less-qualified borrowers (to fight evil red-lining). And then Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac started goals of increasing their mortgage purchases of less-qualified borrowers and less collateralized mortgages. Then the derivatives guys got into the action, by using derivatives to lay off the risk on the quality of mortgage packages and provide triple-A securities required by insurance companies and pension funds. What could go wrong?

Thirdly, little Ben Bernanke, Chairman of the Federal Reserve System, failed to follow the dictum of Walter Bagehot that there should be a "lender of last resort" during a financial crisis. Bagehot's idea was that the Bank of England should "Lend freely. At a high rate of interest. On good banking securities." But even then, the Bank of England didn't have enough equity to do the job, so it relied on the credit of the UK Treasury. In our day, I would say that lender of last resort means you don't let any financial institution collapse. Period. Oh, you strip the owners and stockholders of their equity. You make a clean sweep of mansions in the Hamptons. You even make the bondholders take a haircut. But that is after the panic is over. And you use the full faith and credit of the United States government to keep the credit system going. See, in the Crash of 2008, interest rates on US Treasuries went down. People wanted US Treasury securities. They didn't think that the US government was going down. But little Ben Bernanke decided he didn't have the legal authority to take over Lehman Brothers with all those low-rate Treasury bills.

Well, little Ben. Given what we now know about how the Deep State takes care of its own, I think that a bit of courage by you would have gone a long way to moderate the Crash and the Great Recession. Think how cool Obama, the first black president, would have looked as the economy surged in the 2010s! Think how many Latino homeowners wouldn't have been wiped out!

But you choked, Ben. Just like a true Swamp Creature.

OK. But what do we do now?

I think that the basic problem is that governments are used to betting the whole country -- with the National Debt -- on their projects. And why not? If Zimbabwe or Venezuela goes down, the ruler himself doesn't suffer. Not so long as there are Swiss bank accounts.

Let me make this clear. When the ruling class bets the country with debt, or when the ruling class forces college students to bet their futures with college debt, the ruling class usually doesn't suffer if the bet doesn't pan out. But when ordinary people get over their heads with debt then they certainly do suffer.

The fact is that debt is always a big bet on the future. It bets the borrower's future income on a nice house now, and if the borrower fails and the loan can't be fully liquidated then it is the lender that takes the fall. And the borrower is wiped out. But the point of debt financing is that it is supposed to be low risk. Sorry, Charlie. In my book 80 percent 30-year mortgages are not low risk. Not for the borrower; not for the lender. That's why we have all the federal guarantees and subsidies: to paper over the real risks.

We have securities for high risk propositions: they are called stocks, equities. They are really cool.

The problem is that the way that governments finance their wars is by betting the whole country on winning the war by flooding the economy with its debt securities and its paper money. Strictly speaking, wars should be financed with equity. But they are not. Because governments can afford to break the rules, particularly when the whole country is at stake. And maybe that is as it should be.

But should the government bet the country on "affordable housing?" Or on grandpa's Social Security pension?  Or grandma's Medicare health care? Or Suzie Snowflake's college education? I don't think so. And the reason is that government just cannot bear to pull the punchbowl away in the middle of the party; they just do not have a clue when it is time to adjust things and maybe pull back a bit. And anyway, politicians and bureaucrats and regulators don't have a clue. You might say that someone should have known in the 2000s that something was out of kilter with housing. No doubt. So who does the "someone" button-hole? President George W. Bush? But he was executing on a cunning plan to get Latino votes with affordable housing. Liberals that care about the poor and marginalized? But they are clueless about anything except the latest liberal political scam.

Yeah. My solution to housing crises and crashes and so on is to get the government out of it, and that the government only borrow for wars. But I do demand that the little Ben Bernanke of the next panic do his job and act as lender of last resort, and get with the program.

In the Crash of 2008 you may have heard about the $700 billion bailout. But did you know about the $16 trillion guarantee of money-market mutual funds? Check it out. Do you think that the feds could have managed the whole thing with a federal guarantee instead of the $700 billion TARP game? Who knows.

The main thing to understand about governments and ruling classes and Deep States and Swamps is that they are idiots. They really do not have a clue what they are doing. So the less money they get their hands on the better.

So why doesn't the rest of America agree with me? Are they dumb or something, or am I.

Friday, September 14, 2018

A Highly Satisfactory Tech Experience

Lady Marjorie and I are taking a trip to India in December, and the question arose: what should we do about cell service? Last time we went, in early 2009, we just went without. But we survived on wi-fi in the hotels. And I managed to update when the 2010 budget came out by finding a good wi-fi spot in the hotel in Pondicherry. I had loaded my little Dell laptop with all the stuff I needed do load up the budget data onto my provider's server.

But this is 2018, buster. So what about a SIM card for India? Last time I visited my daughter in France I got a temporary SIM card which worked OK, except for a dead period about a day in. Hey, said a friend of Marjorie's! Switch to Google's Project Fi, which allows calls and texts and data in most foreign countries. No extra charge -- most of the time!

Done deal, I said, and ordered up a new SIM card. It costs $20 a month for calls and text and $10 per GB with a max of $60 per month. That's great because I use very little data unless I'm out of town. Only problem is that I needed a new phone, because Google piggy-backs on whatever provider is available, and that needs a newer phone, Google said. So that was $200.

The conversion from my existing Ting service was nominal, except it took almost 48 hours to start receiving texts. Pretty soon I discovered that I would pay for exactly the data used, rather than for the next tranche as with my Ting account. Then I talked to a guy in the cell-phone industry, and he said that his Project Fi had worked in every foreign country except Oman. Oh man.

But the first real test was a trip to Sol-Duc Hot Springs resort in the Olympic National Park at the end of a 12 mile drive up from US 101. How well did Project Fi do in the all-American wilderness?

Last year when we drove up to Sol-Duc I lost my Ting signal (actually T-Mobile) before the turnoff to Sol-Duc, and Lady Marjorie lost Verizon at Mile 7 on the Sol-Duc road. No cell service -- and no wi-fi -- at Sol-Duc. Sorry pal!

But this time both Lady Marjorie's Verizon and my new Project Fi were good up till almost Mile 12. Still no cell service at the Sol-Duc resort itself. They say that Project Fi does not use Verizon, but it sure looked as though it was using Verizon on the Sol-Duc road, especially as both the Project Fi phone and the Verizon phone lost signal at exactly the same point.

That was Wednesday. Today, Thursday, we drove down the Sol-Duc road to a parking spot between Mile 7 and 8 and got signal and data. So I could post my blog post and Lady Marjorie could answer dozens of texts and emails. Then back up into the wilderness. What a world!

New Rules: The border of the civilized world is the border between signal and no signal. Beyond the boundary of cell service there be dragons!

The next test is to go up to Canada and see if Project Fi performs up there. If it does, I think that Lady Marjorie will convert to Project Fi too. Then we will be able to text each other from the front seat to the back seat on the road in India. For free. Providing we are not off-piste in some national park, surrounded by tigers.

Thursday, September 13, 2018

Daniel Quinn's Rickety Path to the Future

In a way, Daniel Quinn of Beyond Civilization is just like me. He is trying to find a way out of the dreadful hierarchical culture in which we find ourselves. But he and I have rather different ideas about what is good and what is bad and what needs to change.

In the Good Old Days, he says, humans lived it tribes and were as happy as tribes -- or lions and tigers and bears. But then came the agricultural revolution and hierarchy, with Pharaohs at the top and serfs at the bottom. A great life for Pharaohs, but not so good for the folks that had to build the pyramids.

See, he writes, a tribe is like a circus, where everybody pitches in and does their bit without griping. Everybody instinctively understands that everybody has to pitch in to make the circus a success.

Except, old chum, that tribes and circuses come and go like the wind, and when they go they disappear into the void, known only to God. Whereas the Pharaoh and his food-built pyramids lasted for a thousand years.

The thing about the agricultural age is that it formalized hierarchy. Don't tell me that the old tribes didn't have hierarchy; of course they did, just as the troops of the great apes have hierarchy. It's just that it seems that all the cultures of the agricultural age had big-time hierarchy, with kings and armies and priests and then serfdom and slavery for the guys at the bottom.

Now Daniel Quinn claims that the lost Central American civilizations -- Maya, Toltec, and whatnot -- mysteriously ended and nobody knows why; on his view it seems that the people, the proles, just "walked away." And so can we.

Hey, Dan. I doubt it. Think Venezuela. The proles are perfectly happy to live in a vile hierarchical Bolivarian regime. And when the whole thing starts to fall apart they don't demand reform. They just sit there taking their bennies from the regime until the money runs out. Then, and only then, they start to walk away, as the Venezuelans are now doing.

Here's what I think really happens when things start to go wrong. The people rebel, whether it is the peasants with pitchforks of the early Second Millennium, Walt Tyler and all, or the Captain Swing agricultural laborers smashing the threshing machines, or the Luddites smashing machine looms, or the workers in the late 19th century getting shirty during capitalistic financial panics and depressions. But their rebellions are the useless actions of cornered rats. Now maybe this is just the slave behavior of the lower orders of the agricultural age carried over into the new world order of capitalism, but I doubt it. Otherwise we wouldn't talk about cornered rats.

But let us be clear. The point about agricultural empires is that there are a lot more people living in them than there used to be when everyone was just living in a tribal village. And this is a big thing.

So when an agricultural empire breaks up and grass starts growing up in the cracks, and people start walking away, what you don't see is the millions of people that are dying in the process as the agricultural empire resets to village. This is because of the millions that did not survive to tell their tale. All stories in this world are survivor stories. The rest are only known to archaeologists thousand of years later.

What Daniel Quinn wants us all to do is to break out of the hierarchical civilizational model and start inventing new tribes, where people come together spontaneously to form some enterprise, kinda like the Eastern Mountain News that he and his wife and a couple of other folks created out of nothing in Madrid, New Mexico, a while back. They just paid themselves out of the proceeds each week. No wages, no benefits. They just adjusted their demands on the organization to fit the proceeds.

Couldn't agree more, pal. Only your ignorance of the nature of the Great Enrichment of the last 200 years, and the price system, and the fact that your Beyond Civilization came out just before the Tech Startup Culture became a thing means that you really do not get what is trying to be born right here in the good old USA.

For instance, you don't have many nice things to say about today's billionaires, the Bill Gateses of the world. But do you know what I heard from a guy that heard it from a guy that spoke to Gates? He asked Bill Gates why he bothered to take Microsoft public. And Gates replied that he did it in order to share the company with the employees. And that is the implied contract in all tech startups. If we make it big then we go public and everybody gets a bit of the loot.

Quinn is also a bit dismissive of the wage culture, taking the Marxist view that wages dehumanize the workers, making them into mere drones. But the thing about wages is that they remove from the workers the day-to-day risks of a farm or of a business, which means that the owners and the bond-holders have to take a bigger risk. I suspect that most people really do not like to shoulder the day to day risks of life, and that this goes deeper than the learned subordination of the agricultural age. In fact, I believe that business owners are pretty cunning about this. They provide a lot more than just cash wages, such  as health insurance and pensions and vacations and sick leave and stuff. All that makes it hard for wage-earning employees to pick up and leave all that for another job.

In other words I'd say that most people just want to belong and stay where they belong. They do not get up and git unless they are well-and-truly forced to do.

Now I believe that our modern capitalistic era represents an amazing New Dawn for the human race, because through the nature of the price "system" and the marketplace, we folks today are constantly informed of the value of the service we provide our fellow humans. And if we try a new venture the price system pretty quickly tells us whether we have a good idea or not. This is radically different from the hierarchical static world of the agricultural age where most people were subordinate peasants and had to be because of their intrinsic vulnerability to pirates and plunderers.

In other words I would say that many of us humans are willing and eager to invent a new form of tribalism, of spontaneous belonging and enterprise if it weren't for stick-in-the-muds like Daniel Quinn that have worshipped too long at the altar of environmentalism, sustainability and divided the world into good people like him that want to save the world from "maximum harm" and bad people that just want to get on. Daniel Quinn has listened to too much of the bad news about violence and poverty and waste and poisoning of the environment to have read the counter-narrative of today's reduced violence of 5 violent deaths per 100,0000 in the capitalist world against 50 per 100,000 in the Medieval world and 500 per 100,000 in the hunter-gatherer world. Or that when societies get to about $10,000 per capita GDP they start cleaning up the environment. Etc.

But we humans are afflicted by the folks running a Great Reaction that are trying to hobble and prevent what Quinn says he is trying to encourage.

OK, great. Only, to my mind, Daniel Quinn has his feet planted too firmly in the camp of the Great Reaction to really help with the folks walking away from the crumbling wreck of what he calls the "Taker" culture.

For instance, our liberal friends make a big deal about the sins of slavery. Yeah, well, according to Max Weber and others slavery was a particular characteristic of the agricultural age. And it is curious that on the very cusp of the transition from the agricultural age slavery reaching its most perfect manifestation in the slave sugar plantation in which slaves cultivated the efficient C4-photoynthesis cane sugar plant and got fed with C4 corn. But in the new age slavery doesn't pay, according to Weber. We need more responsible workers now. So we made a big deal about the immorality of slavery, had a knockdown-drag-out Civil War about it and then had the early 20th century wars which we may hope were the last hurrah of slavery, including drafted soldiers (really slave soldiers).

So I dare say that the new models of enterprise in the Internet age will just throw the old ways in the garbage can of history.

But I don't know if Daniel Quinn will really like it. There is a lot in him that seems to revel in the old ways of Good and Bad, with Nietzsche's "the priests" teaching us to hate ourselves, as in non-sustainable practices that are Going To Kill the Planet!

And he seems especially immured in the creative culture that, in my view, is a poor substitute for the creation and rearing of children. His Ishmael novel is apparently about a kid that was real nice and sang and played the guitar, but never found a purpose to get his life going. So he committed suicide. Well, since the kid didn't find a girl and marry her and get some children going I can understand that. And I notice that Quinn mentions his wife Rennie but no children.

Here's my problem with this. I suspect the reason that humans got with the hierarchy and the serfdom and the slavery and the exploitation of the agricultural age is that it was better at getting kids on the ground and out of the nest that you could get from life in the hunter-gatherer tribe. Agriculture sustains a lot more humans on this planet than hunter-gathering. Energy-fed industry sustains a heck of a lot more humans than agriculture, although there is a risk, which liberals obsess over, that we may kill the planet in the process. But hey, liberals, maybe not!

Because however we argue about Pharaohs enslaving us and "maximum harm" and growing our own food instead of just picking it up as we wander through the forest, there is one and one only point to human life. Generation. The next generation. If we get the next generation on the ground and out of  the nest, then we are doing OK, at least for now. But anyone that doesn't put kids on the ground is not pulling their weight. And in my view anyone that doesn't put kids on the ground is liable to suffer from many of what the Freuds and the Jungs called "neuroses," whatever that meant. I guess we call it "mental health problems" now. Quinn thinks that the incidence of mental health problems is way up. I wonder why.

Right now I am reading the last part of Nietzsche's Also Spake Zarathustra in which he is supposed to show us what he really means by the higher man, or Superman, or Übermensch. That is what we are all working on, Nietzsche, Chantrill, and Quinn. But what, Zarathustra, is that higher man really going to be, presuming he won't be the Blond Beast of whom we've heard tell?

Stay tuned till next week.

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Lighting the Way with a Dim Lamp

We are out in the Olympic National Park, Lady Marjorie and I, but on the road, at a bookstore in Port Townsend, I picked up the 20-year-old Beyond Civilization by Daniel Quinn, whose big success is Ishamael.

The Good Thing about Beyond Civilization is that Quinn understands that another "program" -- he is hesitant to say "government program" -- is not going to solve the world's problems.
Programs are sticks planted in the mud of a river to impede its flow. The sticks do impede the flow. A little. But they never stop the flow, and they never turn the river aside.
That's a very good metaphor, although many programs are not just stick, but bloody great boulders dumped right in the middle of a river, and cause flooding and scouring and all manner of harms that end up with millions of people dying.

Actually, I'd say that programs are the actions of politicians that need to appear to be "doing something." But really the only important thing for a politician is to reward his supporters. That is how he wins elections. Programs are just the means to the end of rewarding the supporters.

And Quinn has another good idea. The things that work in this world just work. We don't really know why, and we don't have to.

But on page 5 he falls into an great big Trap for Heffalumps. He observes that, in our culture, "the food is under lock and key... The food is all owned by someone, and if you want some, you will have to buy it."

Well, yes. But that is not a bug, it is a feature.

And do you know why, Daniel Quinn? It is because we moderns have made an astonishing discovery. In the old days, you see, the only way you could get food was by belonging to a tribe and partaking of the food hunted and gathered by that tribe. If you were a member of the tribe you could have your share of the food. If you were not a member there was only one way of getting food from the tribe: by killing the men of the tribe and seizing the food. Yes. The food was still owned, back in the good old days: it was owned by the tribe. And it was still under lock and key: defended by the the men, the army of the whole tribe, to the death. In the feudal age, of course, a peasant got to occupy land and eat the food on it by the grace of his liege lord. So the liege lord rented to key to the peasant, who had to farm the lord's demesne in order to grow and each the food on his peasant patch of land.

So food in human society has always been owned by someone. It's just that in the good old days there was no chance of buying any food owned by somebody else. You had to fight for it.

In other words, there was a very limited market, where humans could buy and sell exchanging one product of human enterprise for another and, most basic of all, exchanging their labor for money with which to buy food and other necessaries. The reason that food is under lock and key today is that we have a remarkable system -- that nobody really understands -- where the whole human race is exchanging everything imaginable through the "mechanism" of the price system. Everyone gets to own things, and you get access to the stuff that other people own by paying them for it.

Only the price system isn't a "system" and it isn't a "mechanism." In our modern age, the post-Newtonian age, we understand that "systems" and "mechanisms" really don't tell us what is going on. The closest we come to understanding the marketplace is through the notion of "emergent phenomenon" that has been developed by the Chaos theory guys.

OK. As usual, I am commenting on a book when I am only part way through. Quinn's big idea is that humans are tribal, so whatever we do to get Beyond Civilization it will be through a reinvention of the tribal notion. And I agree.

But I suspect that Quinn is going to have a real problem imagining that future when he doesn't understand markets and prices, and doesn't understand that the core of the market economy is not just "improve on something, then put it out there for people to improve on," but "improve on something that you think other people will want, and then put it out there for other people to decide if they will benefit." You find out how good your improvement is when people actually show up to buy your new improvement.

If you are right with your improvement then maybe you will be "rewarded with respect, fame, and wealth", as Quinn suggests, or maybe not. John D. Rockefeller, a man that helped flood the world with non-explosive lamp oil -- imagine that: lamp oil that didn't blow up in your face! -- and got to be astonishingly rich. But respect? Not if Daddy's girl Ida Tarbell had anything to do with it.

Quinn also suggests that nobody had any idea about whether the Industrial Revolution would work, and when it did, just we assumed that, of course, it would work.
It's perfectly obvious to us that the Industrial Revolution was bound to succeed.
That's not how I understand the history. For me it starts with this guy in Britain:
Wrote Carew Reynell in 1685: “Though we are a nation already pretty substantial... yet it is easy for us to be ten times richer.”
And then there was Adam Smith. His Wealth of Nations was really a work of prophecy, proposing a new theory of markets that the name of the game was not piling up gold, but merely exchange for mutual benefit.

And then came Marx, who said the whole thing was heading for disaster, as the ruthless competition of the market would squeeze out profits and "immiserate" the workers.

Then came the Fabians who said that the workers would be screwed unless the government came up with "programs."

Then came our current ruling class progressives that say that the only reason ordinary people have participated in the benefits of capitalism is because of the social benefits -- wage-and-hour laws, abolition of child labor, government pensions, government health care -- that noble activists demanded and noble progressives legislated for their benefit.

I'd say that we humans have been spending the whole of the last 200 years arguing about the Industrial Revolution and why it worked if it worked and what we need to do to contain it, or enable it or help it or hinder it.

But I will give Daniel Quinn this: The world works on "vision." Someone has an idea, and occasionally it actually works. When it works we all just scoop it up and use it. People don't have to know how it works or why it works. But they do know whether they want it and whether they want to use it.

Here's something that intrigues me. Quinn says that humans are tribal, and I can see that he is proposing that Beyond Civilization will be a new form of tribalism. I agree. In fact our present "civilization" is the latest in what I call "fake tribalisms" that humans with vision have invented since the dawn of agriculture. Today's fake tribes are things like churches, corporations, political parties, armies, securities exchanges, civic groups, "activist" groups, and so on.

But what will come next? That, of course, is the great question. Let's see what Quinn comes up with.

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Is It 1942 Yet on the Culture War Front?

If you are President Obama the Trump presidency is a product of "resentment," as he said in his recent speech: "resentment and paranoia." He lamented, according to Allie Stuckey,
the destruction of the Republican Party and the ensuing demise of America because of the divisiveness and bigotry propagated by the president and those who support him.
But, if you look at it from another angle, the left has been running a secular-religious movement, especially successful during the Obama administration, that has resulted in huge changes in popular opinion, as measuring by the polls. Approval of gay marriage has gone from 31% in 2009 to 62% in 2017. Racism as a "big problem?" It was 26% in 2009. Now 58% percent of Americans agree.

Well, of course. Liberals in the media, in the schools, in the entertainment complex, in fashionable corporations are banging the drum every day for progressive issues like "sexuality, gender, race, immigration and welfare." And you better not express a contrary opinion or you could lose your job and get kicked off social media.

Actually, this is not so much a secular-religious movement as the lefty Secular Office of the Inquisition, enforcing its secular-religious orthodoxy everywhere. And when they show you the instruments of torture, why would you decide to experience the full experience the Inquisition has in mind rather than confess your heresy?

Now, in the face of a religious movement determined to enforce its vision of the anointed upon the deplorables, the question becomes: Is "resentment and paranoia" warranted? Or is it just pure bigotry? And how would you tell?

Let me explain. I have been reading Hitler's Mein Kampf on the internet, and the first couple of chapters explain the whole thing: Hitler's "resentment and paranoia" that he turned into a massive political movement that turned Europe upside down for twelve years.

As a young ethnic German man in Vienna before World War I Hitler experienced the situation of ethnic Germans in that multi-ethnic Hapsburg empire. They were a minority, and were being totally outmaneuvered in Vienna politics, because the non-Germans -- Czechs, Hungarians, Jews, etc. -- were obviously interested in diluting the influence of the ethnic Germans that had ruled the Austrian empire for centuries, and the Hapsburg rulers were trying to keep their whole rickety empire together. Hitler could look down the road and see that things were not going to be too good for ethnic Germans in the Austrian Empire, not when ethnic German votes were split between a nationalist party and a Catholic center party.

Solution? Put all the ethnic Germans together in a Greater Germany. Then no Germans would be a minority subject to the power plays of non-German ethnic groups.

Unfortunately Hitler also believed that this Greater Germany would need more land, because, as everybody knew, a nation couldn't survive on mere manufacturing and trading. A people needed to live on its own land growing its own food, etc.

Now, of course, in the event, the disaster of World War I detached the ethnic Germans of Austria into their own ethnic state. So that was all right, but too late, because Hitler had already made up his mind about what the German people needed. And the economic turmoil of the 1920s, the hyperinflation that was worse in Austria than in Germany, discredited the rulers and created space for troublemakers like Hitler.

In the event, Hitler got to execute on his plan for a Greater Germany and an even bigger Lebensraum for the Germans to get their food and natural resources, right up until 1942 when Germany overextended itself strategically on the plains of the Ukraine and the gates of Moscow.

Note that today Germany is an ethnic German state sitting in the middle of Europe as the primary manufacturing and trading nation in Europe and it doesn't matter that it doesn't have a hinterland for food-growing and resources extraction. So it didn't need Hitler at all to get where it is today.

But, the point is that when you have a multi-ethnic state then the obvious thing for politically ambitious people to do is to appeal to people on the basis of their religion and ethnic identity. Cue Lee Kwan Yew, first Prime Minister of Singapore, that in "multiracial societies... you vote in accordance with race and religion."

We know that our liberal friends think that, given another 30 years, America will be a majority-minority country and that white people will no longer dominate US politics.

There are, of course a number of assumptions that liberals are making.

Liberals are assuming that their coalition of the minorities will still obtain down the road. Will it? Will Asians and Latinos and blacks all still vote the same ticket? Perhaps all the non-black minorities expel the blacks from the minority coalition, because anti-black racism, and the Democratic Party becomes a rainbow coalition and the Republican Party a white-black party.

Or will East Asians join the Republican Party, as a party that respects East Asian family values and business success?

Perhaps Latinos and blacks will finally get up into the middle class and become deplorables and champion the traditional family and turn against lefty gender rainbow politics.

The risk, of course, is that liberals court the disaster that happened to Germany in 1945. And everything was going so well, as late as the spring of 1942!

When you listen to President Obama and the lefty progressives it all sounds as if we are just a couple of elections away from progressive triumph. Maybe they are right. Or maybe they are just as delusional as Adolf Hitler, who got a couple of things right, and a lot of other things completely wrong.

And anyway, to complain about the other side's "resentment and paranoia" is a little rich. Isn't the game of every politician to pump up the resentment and paranoia of his own partisans? Isn't that what Democrats did when they ran the Solid South? Isn't that what Democrats did when they championed the working class against the "malefactors of great wealth?" Isn't that what Democrats do when they appeal to the racial identity of African Americans and the gender identity of feminists and gays and transgenders, and the atheist identity of post-Christian educated liberals?

Look, all politics is about "us" and "them." Liberals do a politics of "us" as the educated elite and the marginalized races and genders and the "them" of deplorables.

President Trump is doing an "us" of America the nation, as in Make America Great Again. His "them" is unfair foreign trading nations, illegal immigrants. So his "us" is basically the whole of America except for the illegals.

Frankly, I'd say that Trump's idea of America is higher and nobler and more diverse and more inclusive than the liberal version. As Hillary Clinton so ably said, her division of America puts an irredeemable 25% of "them" beyond the Pale, because "you could put half of Trump’s supporters into what I call the basket of deplorables."

So what would Hillary Clinton say to Salena Zito's middle-aged woman in Grand Junction, Colorado, that has worked all her life at a candy factory, rising in 20 years from seasonal work as a contract worker to full-time work to supervisor to product manager?

What does Barack Obama have to say to her?

There is an old saying: live by the sword, die by the sword. I dare say it applies to a lot of other things, as in: "live by identity politics, die by identity politics."

Just saying.

Monday, September 10, 2018

Activism Culture Leads to "Spartacus Illusion"

Last week in the United States Senate we were privileged to experience a United States Senator, protected and privileged by the full power of the most powerful nation state the world has ever seen, likening himself to a 1st century BC Thracian slave, leader of a failed slave revolt: Spartacus.

Hey, How come a Jewish kid, Kirk Douglas, got to play Spartacus in the movie? Couldn't they find a Thracian to do the job?

This event excited me, because it puts the capstone on my "Activism Culture" concept.

My idea is that if you want to understand the left, and why every well-born good little girl from college wants to get into "activism," you need to understand the basic game that the left is playing.

We start with the warrant for government: It is to protect our people from the invaders. That is the warrant for any state. We must defend the borders from invaders that would come and steal our grain, kill our men, and ravish our women. If there is no such threat, then there is no warrant for government.

So if you are a well-born rich kid, with an urge to make a name for yourself, what do you do? What do you do when you live in a society that is basically at peace and where there is no threat from the Huns or  the Mongols? Moreover, in the modern state, we have separations of power, checks and balances, strict rules limiting the powers of the government that protect people from the power and pride of the ruling class. How is a rich kid to make a name for himself?

It was the genius of Marx and Engels to figure this out. You advocate for people outside the system that are not represented in the councils of government. Suppose you are a Captain Swing rioter, a landless agricultural laborer in Sussex in 1820 facing oblivion as you observe the farmers buying the new threshing machines that are going to put you out of a job and out of a livelihood. Do you go and talk to your local Member of Parliament? Hardly, because you don't have the vote. So your only option is the option of the cornered rat. You lash out, and smash the threshing machines, because the alternative is just to curl up and die.

In 1848, when Marx and Engels issued their Communist Manifesto, the workers did not have the vote. So the coolest thing that the son of a prominent lawyer and the son of a prominent textile manufacturer could do with their lives was to say: Yeah! We support the workers! Justice for the workers! And imagine themselves leading the workers through bloody revolution to the Happy Isles of emancipation and justice.

But as I keep saying, the rising bourgeoisie of the time, that was beginning to be the dominant political class, was not that interested in power. They were perfectly happy, with a bit of prodding, to give the workers the vote, and even submit to the workers' legislative agenda which would do nothing for good middle-class responsible citizens except raise their taxes.

Do you see the problem for the Marxes and the Engels? If the workers had got the vote, and thus their political views were getting a hearing, then there was no need for young rich-kid activists to lead them to revolution and death or glory at the barricades.

That's when we come to Leftism, Phase 2, courtesy of the rich kids of the Frankfurt School in the 1920s. They came up with the cool idea that activist rich kids should lead women and minorities, who were then without the vote and civil rights and were oppressed and exploited, to revolution and liberation and emancipation. Revolution Baby, was the cry of the lefty rich-kid followers of rich-kid Frankfurt School alum. Herbert Marcuse in the fabled Sixties.

But Oh No! The bourgeoisie led by noble liberals gave women the vote, and civil rights to non-whites, so just about everybody was not within the system, and could get the ear of politicians and the Man and didn't need to riot in the streets to get the attention of the ruling class. Now what?

Perfectly simple. Gays! It was monstrous that gays didn't have the right to marry just like heterosexual homophobes. But then gays got their gay marriage. So now what?

I know! The only people outside the system are now illegal immigrants and Muslims. So let's advocate for them and break down the barriers of hate and xenophobia and fill the streets with AntiFa and women's marches and cut the haters and the extremists off from social media!

Do you see the point? If there is no oppressed group outside the system there is no warrant for the clunking fist of government and no need for well-born rich-kid activists to mount the barricades for Justice!

And that would mean that well-born rich kids would have to get a job. Or do something much more difficult than the "activism" of spending other peoples money on politics: like doing the Peter Thiel thing of Zero to One. In other words the real hard thing to do is to find something that nobody has thought of and make it into a successful business, creating jobs for ordinary Joes and Janes and some fantastic new product for the masses.

But really! What well-born rich kid wants to do something that difficult? It's much easier -- and much more fun -- to get into politics and find something that needs the application of force, because you are fighting some existential peril. Something like climate change, refugee kids, or bike lanes, or plastic straws.

The point is that behind all these busy attempts to find something that justifies a political movement is the moral and ethical problem of being a well-born rich kid. How can you justify your lust for political power?

Even being a rich kid advocating for the underprivileged is a bit of a hokey thing. Charles Dickens could see it over a century ago with his Mrs. Jellyby who was all worked up about the plight of natives in Africa while neglecting her kids and the natives right there in London were shivering and going hungry.

So it is not surprising that the well-born rich kids reimagine themselves. They are not haughty Lady Bountifuls spreading charity among the poor and the homeless. Oh no. In reality they are fearless slaves challenging The Man: "I am Spartacus."

Only, of course, the well-born rich-kid activists are lying to themselves, lost in a Spartacus Illusion. Because They are The Man.

As any racist sexist homophobe deplorable can tell you.

Friday, September 7, 2018

Our Big Woman Problem. Again.

Over a century ago, the German sociologist Georg Simmel opined that women were going to change the world. Given the decline in the need for women to do domestic tasks by hand women would venture out into the public square, and inevitably they would change it.
Obviously, Simmel wrote, the public sphere, the world outside the home, in the short term would still be defined by men for men, but in the long term women would transform the public square to suit "a more feminine sensibility." 
Our modern default assumption is that this would be a "good thing," both for women and for men.

It is clearly coming to pass, for anyone that has eyes to see, and ears to hear, that in many ways the opposite is true, and I think that there is a simple reason for it.

The culture of women that has developed over the ages is supremely adapted for life in the domestic sphere, and maybe we needed the emergence of women into the public square to really understand this.

What is the supreme goal of the domestic sphere? Obviously, it is to keep everyone in the home alive, with whatever resources that can be obtained. So, even today with women running around in the public square, women are supremely interested in food safety. In keeping their children away from danger. In health care, health care, health care. Here is the foundation of the female Culture of Complaint. Whatever resources are provided by the man of the house to keep everyone alive, it is not enough, and so every woman is always complaining and needing more.

But what about the public square? Obviously, in the old days, it consisted of the men getting together to defend the tribal territory, unto the death. Notice the difference with the domestic sphere. In the domestic sphere, the woman must stay alive if she is to keep the others alive. But for men, they must keep the women and children alive by being ready to sacrifice their lives: men are expendable.

But now, in the modern public square, I think that the watchword is "get with the program, Jenkins." Whatever the market decrees, that is what you do. Whatever your employer needs, that is what you do. There are no sure things, no lifetime jobs, no guarantees. Just Do It. Thus the male Culture of Insult. If you are a man and expendable, and ever needing to get with the program, nothing is sacred, least of all oneself.

With these two ideas in mind, we can analyze the current scene. Here is a piece worrying about the coddling of kids: an interview with Jonathan Haidt. He comments, apropos trigger warnings and safe spaces:
Many people in children’s worlds want to be helpful, supportive, and empathetic. So if we try really hard to seek out the threats that young people face and protect them from those threats, aren’t we being nice? Aren’t we being helpful?
In other words, whatabout keeping everybody safe, as per the woman's goals in the private sphere? Well, it doesn't work, because humans come into the world as unfinished animals and they need to learn a lot before they are complete as adults:
It requires a lot of experience to finish itself. And that experience requires a lot of exposure to small challenges and small risks. It is essential that a young mammal take risks, get hurt, and learn about the effects of its behavior. 
So the more little children are protected from all the dangers of life the less they are prepared for the life after childhood. The reason we are facing this problem of an obsession with safety is that women coming out into the public square bring their culture of the private sphere of safety and staying alive and enforce it in the public square.

Then there is the sexual revolution. And of course we are seeing this week the parading of the Holy Grail, abortion, by the usual progressive suspects in the question of the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to be an Associate Justice of the US Supreme Court. These activists don't seem to understand that abortion on demand licenses the unworthy man to say: just get rid of it.

My bigger point is that I don't think women do very well with the "get with the program" culture of the sexual revolution. Here's a tiny example from Suzanne Fields. College football player has what he thinks is consensual sex with a college co-ed, but.
The sweetheart described their sexual encounter to her roommate, remarking that he did not use protection against disease and pregnancy for a couple of seconds... [T]he roommate said that the couple of seconds was rape and reported it to campus authorities.
And the kid is suspended from school until the woman in question graduates.

Sorry Charlie, but women don't want "consensual sex," they want a relationship, and what we are seeing on campus and in the #MeToo movement is women nominally believe in the sexual revolution -- and remember legal abortion means that sex should have no consequences unless you want it to -- but in fact, from deep down inside them where their feelings live, they don't.

But because nearly all women are Good Little Girls they don't have the strategic chops to see around corners and realize that what they are being taught, that you can be a woman and compete in the public square just like a man, is straight-up rubbish.

Here's Christopher DeGroot weighing in on all this and quoting surveys that say that women are less happy than back in the 1970s. Golly! Who knew!

And the problem is that women are getting involved in a project to change the culture using the methods of the private sphere, manipulation and complaint, rather than the open outcry of the public square, insult and the open advertisement of goals, aims, and tendencies.

The problem, if you ask me, is that elite women need to be special, while the vast majority of women want to care for their families although they would like a part-time job to get them out of the house. Elite women are turning the culture upside-down so that they can be special. And they don't give a damn about ordinary women that have to live in the undertow of their elite fashionable specialness.

Of course, one of the reasons we got Trump is that the elite has been doing the same number on men for the last 50 years, and finally Trump came along and got deplorable men to believe that he "cared about people like them."

Maybe in another 50 years we will get Trump II when some candidate figures out how to speak to deplorable women and get them to believe that she "cares about people like them."