Memorial Day Forum

OTB relies on its readers to support it. Please consider helping by becoming a monthly contributor through Patreon or making a one-time contribution via PayPal. Thanks for your consideration.

FILED UNDER: Open Forum,
Steven L. Taylor
About Steven L. Taylor
Steven L. Taylor is a Professor of Political Science and a College of Arts and Sciences Dean. His main areas of expertise include parties, elections, and the institutional design of democracies. His most recent book is the co-authored A Different Democracy: American Government in a 31-Country Perspective. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Texas and his BA from the University of California, Irvine. He has been blogging since 2003 (originally at the now defunct Poliblog). Follow Steven on Twitter

Comments

  1. The Q says:

    It was mentioned in another thread that construction crews in Denali were forced by the NPS to stop displaying the American flag but they allow pride flags in parks.

    And you wonder why Biden may lose to a lunatic con man.

    Here is the problem in a nutshell – you folks shitting on those workers in a condescending manner (how many stood watch etc). Those phuckers vote. Alienate enough of them through stupid virtue signaling like this and it’s 2016 all over again.

    No doubt if someone stands up at a Democratic meeting and says “I love this great country” he/she/they/it/ would be booed and
    hissed by some of the commentariat here for being ostentatiously “Patriotic”. As for that silly comment yesterday about “standing watch”, it’s a well known fact conservative servicemen far outnumber the liberals. That’s a fact I know some will deny or hate admitting.

    I have no problem with pride flags in national parks or uniforms being worn at pride events. Just as I have no problem with work crews flying the US flag.

    But then, I’m an old school liberal and not the stupid Hamas loving, pronoun Nazis that permeates the new left.

    Seriously, why does it offend so many that the flag display is offensive? And what is your response when close minded bigots are offended by a prude flag?

    You’re two sides of the same intolerant coin.

    We have an election in 5 months. A serious election. Can us old New Dealers (who regularly waxed Republicans) please ask the neolibs to stop the silly bullschite like siding with Hamas, or complaining about the American flag displayed on trucks.

    Trump and Trumpism have to be destroyed. Neolibs make this task more difficult.

    ReplyReply
    7
  2. charontwo says:

    @The Q:

    We already have conservative media feeding similar thoughts to young people. This is not helpful.

    ReplyReply
    4
  3. OzarkHillbilly says:
  4. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Millions in US face extreme-heat threat as experts urge better protections

    Here’s hoping your AC/heat pump is up to snuff.

    ReplyReply
  5. Kathy says:

    Odds and ends in adventures in AI

    I asked Copilot how to incorporate peanut butter in gravy (because of course), and it listed a gravy recipe, adding the PB after whisking in the stick and drippings to the roux. That’s fine, except it cited no sources. Kind of came up with a recipe on its own?

    I’ve been testing how it responds to my observations about movies and books. For instance, I asked if the movie “Hail, Caesar!” was supposed to be ironic. It replied with a negative, though noting the movie contains irony (what doesn’t?), and gave a succinct summary, emphasizing the plot is about the studio fixer.

    Ok. then I pointed out the bad guys, those who kidnapped the actor for the big budget period movie, were commies. And near the end, when the actor’s been recovered, we see him play a Roman soldier at the crucifixion. He talks to another Roman soldier about Jesús’ teachings, stressing how Jesús saw everyone as equals.

    So, Copilot changed its tune and decided the movie is very ironic.

    It did the same later when I asked whether Bernard Marx in Brave New World is, in essence, a phony.

    I don’t know. It may be entirely to agreeable, or disinclined to engate in debate.

    ReplyReply
  6. Michael Reynolds says:

    @Kathy:
    Ask it why no one bothered with a screenplay for Fall Guy.

    ReplyReply
    1
  7. Slugger says:

    Let me revisit the posting about below replacement birth rates that we discussed last Thursday. This weekend I read a news report that microplastics are found in almost all testicles. Our discussion last Thursday assumed that pregnancy was the result of actions taken after rational considerations, and we talked about measures to increase per woman production by subsidies, parental leave laws, tax breaks, etc. However, it seems to me that a certain percentage of pregnancies are inadvertent. I don’t know what percentage, but if it’s more than 10-15% the inadvertent are the difference between above and below replacement. Many studies show worldwide decreases in sperm counts. Surely this leads to fewer pregnancies. Government actions like parental leave don’t work to increase birth rates. A research program into declining spermatogenesis might be useful. Personally, I suspect environmental pollutants.

    ReplyReply
    5
  8. Scott says:

    @The Q: @charontwo: Charontwo: I don’t understand your comments. The Q is exactly right.

    BTW, it is Memorial Day, a day to remember our fallen comrades who died in service to this great country.

    ReplyReply
    2
  9. Kingdaddy says:

    @The Q: I agree with some of what you say. For example, I think it’s always a good idea for Democrats to express their love of country. In fact, their outrage at what has happened on the right, and what Trumpism has done to the country, is because of the love for something that is now regularly violated.

    I also agree that continued hammering on the identity politics nail isn’t winning over new voters. Talk about how you’ll help minorities more than pronoun integrity.

    I’m also disgusted with the pro-Hamas messages in protests against Israel’s actions in Gaza. Whether they’re made deliberately or out of ignorance, I think they’re reprehensible.

    But when you say “you people,” I have to ask, “Which people?” I don’t think your profile in neo-liberalism applies to many people here on this blog. Nor do I think that certain cultural figures represent everyone who’s a registered Democrat, or might vote for Democrats. Whoever is responsible for the recent Snow White debacle at Disney isn’t the same as, say, Biden, who seems like exactly the sort of old-style Democrat you’re describing.

    Which is exactly why your reference to the flag incident, or non-incident depending on whom you believe, at Denali is not a good starting point for a critique. As far as I can tell from reading the news coverage, a NPS employee might have asked a contractor working on the park to no fly his flag on his truck going and coming from the work site. The NPS denies that actually happened, but his fellow contractors back his story. So there’s no way to adjudicate from a distance whom to believe about a very minor dispute in an Alaskan national park.

    Nonetheless, conservatives in broadcast, print, and social media seized this incident and proclaimed how the NPS had succumbed to wokeness. As someone who has visited many national parks, and still does today, I can say for sure there is no absence of flags. In fact, some NPS locations are filled with flags, and have even more flags on special occasions like July 4th and remembrances of WWII. No one is favoring pride flags at Gettysburg.

    So I applaud your intent, but I don’t agree with the way you’ve tried to make your point.

    ReplyReply
    10
  10. Kathy says:

    @Michael Reynolds:

    Maybe you should ask it why did you go see it 🙂

    I did ask it once why I hate Apple products so much. It came up with an answer* about differing tastes, but mentioned Apple tends to overhype its products.

    I haven’t seen the movie, and won’t, but it got me thinking about TV at the time and afterwards. I may post about it later on. I ran across and instance of the Costanza Principle: You’re watching it because it’s on TV.

    *I think it’s compelled to come up with an answer, regardless of how obtuse, obvious, irrational, etc. the question may be. I once asked it “how many AIs can chat on the head of a pin?”

    ReplyReply
  11. Kingdaddy says:

    For this Memorial Day, a brief bio of Elmer Ellsworth, a friend of Lincoln and one of the first casualties of the Civil War:

    https://armyhistory.org/elmer-e-ellsworth/

    ReplyReply
    3
  12. Kathy says:

    Some weeks ago, I made coffee in the office soon after arriving to work. Later the same day, I put the good coffee on, and the same machine that had happily dripped away in the morning did not work.

    Last Friday I made breakfast (after first getting the new coffee maker going) in the microwave at the office. Just oatmeal with PB, banana slices, and yogurt. Later in the day, at meal time, I put my food in the microwave, and the same machine that had happily zapped the oats refused to work.

    The pattern is clear: home appliances break at the office in the afternoon.

    Now we need to get a new microwave. Unlike coffeemakers, they are rather pricey.

    ReplyReply
    1
  13. Modulo Myself says:

    @Kingdaddy:

    I agree with some of what you say. For example, I think it’s always a good idea for Democrats to express their love of country. In fact, their outrage at what has happened on the right, and what Trumpism has done to the country, is because of the love for something that is now regularly violated.

    Loving your country is like saying you should love your spouse forever. Plenty of people struggle to keep love going in life. Love can simply be lost. That’s why many divorces occur, and that’s why people think of relationships as work, and that’s why the blues and country music exist.

    Love for post-Vietnam America has been the type of political public-faced bullshit which leaves one wondering what goes on behind closed doors. Any act of real work regarding racism or military violence or greed has been evaded in favor of slogans and propaganda. Giving proof of love was the basis of Lear’s tragedy, after all. Politically, America is now like a house with 100 doors, 94 of which can not be entered because of the corpses inside. It’s just all repression and who can love that?

    And my answer is the conservative one. Either you do the work to conserve what you have (which has only once or twice been done in America) or you tear the whole thing down and start again.

    ReplyReply
    5
  14. just nutha says:

    @Kathy: Copilot’s advice seems on point to me. The risk for adding the PB later is that the sauce will separate. If one could grate PB, it could be added like cheese in Alfredo sauce, but I’m not sure that a lump of PB would perform the same way.

    Then again, I never have added nut butter of any sort to anything because of food allergies*, so I’m just guessing. Maybe PB gravy is what powdered PB was invented for.

    * Well actually allergies and the idea of nut butter gravy having marginal appeal.

    ReplyReply
  15. Kathy says:

    I found turkey breasts and legs for sale at the store on the weekend. I got two breasts, about one kilo each.

    To cook them, I seasoned with pepper and garlic powder (both sides), and placed each one on a baking dish over some parboiled potato slices and cocktail wieners. I then put them in the oven at 180 C. Instead of timing them, I tried the probe on my instant read thermometer (it worked!), and let them cook until the thermometer read 74 C.

    I checked their internal temp again. Then I placed one at a time on the multi pot, and used the broiler function (I’ve no idea how this differs from the regular air fryer function) for 7 minutes each. The skin went from mildly brown to golden brown, and very crispy.

    I then let them rest (some more, as they’d rested while I transferred the wieners and potatoes elsewhere, and poured the pan juices into a cup), then sliced/carved them as best I could. I reserved the bones and some meat I couldn’t get loose in the freezer. Hopefully I’ll recall they’re there next week and I can try to make stock (though I may need more bones for that…)

    While they rested, I made gravy with butter and flour for roux, a mix of chicken broth and pan drippings, and some peanut butter (because of course I added PB). I used maybe too little broth, so the gravy was more like a spread, but it tastes great (to me, which is the one person who’ll eat it).

    For the side I made balsamic onions using tomato paste rather than tomato sauce. then mixed them with cooked rice and kasha, and a small can of beans. I used arborio rice, un-rinsed, so it’s pretty thick with all the extra starch (if I’d wanted less starch, I’d have used regular long grain rice).

    The turkey meat was very juicy, not dry at all. IMO, cooking the pieces separately keeps things from drying out. The juiciest parts are the thighs and legs, the breasts being drier to begin with. So cooking the whole turkey in one go gets you a showy, whole bird, hopefully golden brown, but dry meat.

    then I still had to make ice cream. It was a long day in the kitchen.

    ReplyReply
    1
  16. just nutha says:

    @Michael Reynolds: There are dozens of “unlikely hero rescues X” stories and screenplays. They obviously thought they could save money and film it “on the fly” as it were.

    ReplyReply
    2
  17. Gustopher says:

    @The Q: What do you think a Neoliberal is? You seem to think it’s just some liberal that you don’t like, but it’s a person who favors free market solutions, often far to the right in the Democrats (Bill Clinton triangulation), or just libertarians, or Milton Friedman.

    This means that things like this are baffling gibberish.

    We have an election in 5 months. A serious election. Can us old New Dealers (who regularly waxed Republicans) please ask the neolibs to stop the silly bullschite like siding with Hamas, or complaining about the American flag displayed on trucks.

    Beyond that, you seem to be yelling at the grass in your lawn to stop growing. It’s not even yelling at kids to stay off of your lawn.

    There are young, stupid people in nearly every political movement. Stupid shit will happen. It’s inevitable.

    Republicans’ young stupid people are creeps like Kyle Rittenhouse and they’ve just embraced them because they are currently basking in cruel stupidity and their young, stupid people fit into the party. The Republicans are surging towards extremism and the young and stupid are just the brand of the party.

    Democrats have a larger problem as the young and stupid aren’t the brand of the party and are often directly opposed to the core of the fairly centrist party. This is a problem with embracing freedom, and the core party needs to do better at not letting themselves be defined by it.

    ReplyReply
    5
  18. just nutha says:

    @Kingdaddy: The “neolibs” are for The Q what “the progressives” are for others on this forum–a convenient straw whippin’ boy.

    ReplyReply
    5
  19. Mister Bluster says:

    Bill Walton 71
    RIP

    ReplyReply
    2
  20. Pete S says:

    @just nutha:

    Maybe peanut butter powder? My mother in law buys it from time to time, to my knowledge I have never eaten it but cannot be sure.

    @Kathy:

    It sounds like the appliances are just like regular workers – functional in the morning, not so much later in the day.

    ReplyReply
    2
  21. charontwo says:

    @Scott:

    So what is to be gained from talking about U.S. flags on vehicles? Jack shit IMO, YMMV.

    If you want to talk about flags, maybe discussing the Pine Tree Flag would be more productive, considering its linkage to charming outfits like New Apostolic Reformation, Jericho March and to charming planned futures such as the Seven Mountains Mandate. This is a symbol that ties together sweeties like Leonard Leo, Sam Alito, Tom Cotton, Michael Johnson etc.

    Some references:

    MSNBC

    NYMAG

    NYMAG

    This flag, which bears the words “Appeal to Heaven” and an image of a green pine tree, is an unmistakable emblem for an influential segment of Christian nationalists who claim the 2020 election was stolen from Donald Trump, contrary to God’s will, and that believers’ spiritual warfare is essential to restoring God’s anointed leader to his rightful office. It was one of numerous Christian nationalist flags and other iconography carried by Trump supporters Jan. 6 and at the Jericho March, a series of prayer rallies that were like jet fuel for the insurrection. The Jericho March featured right-wing evangelical and Catholic speakers alongside militants such as conspiracist Alex Jones, Trump’s disgraced national security adviser Michael Flynn, and Oathkeepers founder Stewart Rhodes, now serving an 18-year prison sentence for seditious conspiracy and other crimes.

    The Appeal to Heaven flag originated in Revolutionary times as a call to take up arms against unjust rulers who ignored the pleas of their citizens. But after years as a historical relic, in 2015 the flag was popularized by Dutch Sheets, an influential figure in the New Apostolic Reformation. The NAR’s founder, C. Peter Wagner, drew on existing strands and trends in charismatic Christianity to create a powerful network of self-proclaimed apostles and prophets who claimed to be leading a revolution in Christianity. NAR’s adherents, as religion scholar and MSNBC columnist Anthea Butler has written, believe “the government should be run by Christians in order to cleanse the world for Christ’s coming.” They promote spiritual warfare, including spiritual “mappings” to identify demonic forces in communities, and “power encounters” like exorcisms “to cleanse not only people, but cities and communities.” They envision not only a Christian nation, but also a new Christianity at the head of it.

    snip

    “Christian supremacists,” as Taylor describes Sheets and his allies, “would like to see the Supreme Court rule according to his interpretation of the Bible, that the law of God would become the supreme law of the land.” The court’s 2015 decision legalizing marriage equality dismayed Sheets, like many on the right, and he took a particular interest in the 2016 election. “They are praying for total changeover in American culture to restore America to its original covenantal purposes and covenantal arrangement with God,” Taylor said. “Abortion and same-sex marriage are seen as impediments to this.” While Sheets claims to be calling for a spiritual revolution, Taylor said, the Appeal to Heaven flag nonetheless signals “an implied threat of violence.”

    After Sheets’ book, the flag’s use skyrocketed in evangelical communities connected to the NAR. It even received a boost from former GOP vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin, who said Sheets gave her one of her own. In 2020, the flag increasingly became highly associated with Trump and then the insurrection. Taylor said neo-Nazi and other extremist groups have since adopted it, as well.

    According to Taylor, the flag’s use and significance spread like wildfire in some evangelical communities, even as other Americans were unaware of its popularity or meaning. But Alito is not just an ordinary citizen; he’s one of the nine most powerful jurists in the country. The leading proponent of the flag has very specifically taken an interest in the actions of the high court, and we already know from previous reporting that Alito is cozy enough with some evangelical activists to dine with them.

    Above quotes from the MSNBC link.

    There is some great stuff at the NYMAG links also but unfortunately paywalled.

    Justice Samuel Alito appears fond of insurrectionist symbols. The New York Times reported last week that the justice flew an upside-down American flag at his home in the D.C. area in 2021 after the January 6 attack on the Capitol. His far-right views did not spare his beach home, either, where he displayed an “Appeal to Heaven” flag last summer, the paper reported on Wednesday. On Thursday, ProPublica reported that Leonard Leo, the conservative Catholic judicial activist who heads the Federalist Society, flew it outside his estate in Maine. Speaker Mike Johnson, an Evangelical Protestant, displays it outside his congressional office.

    But what does the flag mean? Although it looks innocuous enough, it has become popular within the right wing over recent years. Capitol rioters carried it on January 6, 2021; so have militia members. In their hands, it’s more than an anti-government totem. It represents something else, says scholar Matthew D. Taylor: a hardened form of Christian nationalism. Taylor, author of the forthcoming book The Violent Take It by Force: The Christian Movement That Is Threatening Our Democracy, spoke with me a day after the Times revealed Alito’s second flag. Taylor not only explained the meaning of the Appeal to Heaven flag but described its roots, which run deep within a movement bent upon Christian supremacy in the United States.

    NYMAG interview:

    You mentioned the NAR. What’s the relationship between independent charismatic Christianity as you’ve described it and the New Apostolic Reformation?

    If we think in terms of concentric circles, independent charismatic Christianity would be the biggest circle. The NAR is always kind of the smallest circle but because it’s a network of leaders. Those leaders are highly influential in charismatic media, in these apostolic and prophetic networking circles, and the leaders of the NAR are some of the most influential luminaries of the independent-charismatic world. And when I say world, I mean world. I’m talking about a global, independent-charismatic culture that has many transnational ties, and the NAR leaders are global celebrities.

    Can you explain briefly what the Seven Mountains are and how they factor into this story?

    The framework of the Seven Mountains was coined by Lance Wallnau in the year 2000, and he’s blending together different dreams and visions that he’d heard about from other leaders. The idea is that in society and at every level of society, there are these seven arenas of influence: government, family, religion, education, arts and entertainment, media, and commerce. You imagine them as a mountain, and at the top of that mountain, the position of control is either held by Satan and the demons or by God and the Christians.

    And so the goal of Christians is the mandate. This isn’t framed as a suggestion. It’s framed as “This is what God commands.” It’s for Christians to take control of each of those mountains, to ascend to the top of the mountain, to do spiritual warfare to displace the demons that control that mountain and then to take over control of that sector of society and let Christian influence flow down into it.

    If you think of most Evangelical politics, the political mobilization of the religious right in the 20th century, the goal is to mobilize the grass roots. I mean, even in the phrase the Moral Majority, you get the sense that it’s about mobilizing this majority to win elections. But the Seven Mountains is a vanguard approach to societal revolution. It’s about taking over positions of influence to change society from the top.

    There’s lots more at the links, but this is already too long.

    (This flag is like a secret handshake the would-be cadres, the future leaders of their revolution identify themselves to each other)

    ReplyReply
    5
  22. Kathy says:

    @just nutha:

    I’m developing a theory of peanut butter. The hypothesis is that it combines well with lots of sweet and savory things, and makes them better.

    I call powdered PB peanut powder. I don’t see how oil can be reduced to that state, Unless you used hydrogenated oils, better known as trans fatty acids.

    I checked. PB powder are pulverized peanuts with the oils pressed out. Strictly speaking, that’s not PB, as the later has added oil, or has the powder remixed with the pressed oils.

    It strikes me as a marketing term for tailings of the peanut oil manufacturing process.

    ReplyReply
    2
  23. Gustopher says:

    @Kingdaddy: I think liberals and progressives would be more willing to show their patriotism if there was a way to separate it from the right wing nationalism.

    I was kind of hoping that as the crazy people embraced the Blue Lives Matter NeoNazi flag that the liberals would embrace the normal flag.

    I’m a little surprised that there are no specialty desecrated flags popular in progressive circles. Rainbow flags, Jasper Johns style African color flags…

    ReplyReply
    1
  24. CSK says:

    @Mister Bluster:

    I’m sorry to hear this. Walton was beloved in New England.

    ReplyReply
  25. wr says:

    @The Q: “Here is the problem in a nutshell – you folks shitting on those workers in a condescending manner (how many stood watch etc).”

    No, here is the problem in a nutshell. This was an obvious lie — obvious to anyone, that is, who bothered to read past the headlines and discover that the entire outrage was based on an “anonymous comment” by an unknown person and immediately denied by everyone involved. Of course that didn’t stop right wing media and one scumbag MAGA senator from hyping it to the wind.

    And apparently it didn’t stop you, either. You’re so full of hate for people you claim are on your own side that you adopt and parrot transparent MAGA lies simply so you can feel superior to all those awful Democrats who don’t share exactly your opinions on everything.

    Oh, but now you’ve found a clever way to bash the “Neolibs” — you’ll simply repeat whatever Newsmax says and beat them up with it. No thank you.

    ReplyReply
    12
  26. just nutha says:

    @charontwo: Hold on there. If belief in the sovereignty of God, holds that nothing happens outside of God causing it–which is what the Calvinists I grew up among taught me–how does this “the election was stolen from Donald Trump contrary to God’s will” thing work?

    ReplyReply
    2
  27. just nutha says:

    @Kathy: From what I recall, many brands of PB in ‘Murka use hydrogenated vegetable oil in making their product. It’s what started grocers going into freshly ground-at-the-store PB as a market niche.

    ETA: And you’re probably correct about peanut powder being mostly tailings from peanut oil production. Always find someone to buy the by-products rather than throwing them away. “At Swift, we use everything but the squeal.”

    ReplyReply
    1
  28. Kathy says:

    @just nutha:

    I suppose it depends on one’s level of sophistication, but I think some form of quadruplethink.

    You need to account that all of the acts of the Biblical god are good.

    If you bring in Euthyphro and his dilemma, you may get all the way into septuplethink.

    ReplyReply
    1
  29. DK says:

    @The Q:

    Can us old New Dealers (who regularly waxed Republicans) please ask the neolibs to stop the silly bullschite like siding with Hamas, or complaining about the American flag displayed on trucks.

    Trump and Trumpism have to be destroyed. Neolibs make this task more difficult.

    Oh brother. Or old and young could please attempt to be discerning consumers of media — instead of lazily falling for bullshit propaganda and silly clickbait from Fox News, Twitter, and Facebook.

    Defeating Trumpism is made more difficult by the willingness of liberals to stereotype each other with half-baked rightwing smears. Maybe let’s try fact-finding to absorb the full context before hyperventilating over manipulative outrage-bait? Sheesh.

    ReplyReply
    5
  30. just nutha says:

    @Kathy: The acts of the Biblical (or non-biblical ones, for that matter) are only good to the extent that one believes, however. Free will/agency makes fools of everyone unless no religion is “THE TRUTH,” in which case only advocates for morality and ethics are fools (at least in my sociopathic take on things).

    And I, like al-Ameda before me, also offer my apologies for my failed snark attempt.

    ReplyReply
  31. charontwo says:

    @just nutha:

    i can draw attention to what other people (the NAR for example) say about God and its behavior.

    My personal opinion is that Gods of the theistic type (i.e. not Deist, animist or etc.) can not conceivably exist, just incompatible with the known nature of reality.

    ReplyReply
    2
  32. Michael Reynolds says:

    @DK:

    Defeating Trumpism is made more difficult by the willingness of liberals to stereotype each other with half-baked rightwing smears.

    Yes, by all means, let’s remember that we are never wrong about anything and may not be criticized, because ideological lockstep with the most radical elements on our side is what we’re about now. Look! It’s a heretic! Where’s my charcoal starter fluid?

    If we can’t criticize our own side, our own side will do stupid, self-defeating shit. @Q is right that we should recapture the flag. Tactically right. It would be smart. The Park Service thing per se, I dismissed. But before progressives demand 100% adherence on every issue, they might want to put in a little work figuring out just what that ideology is, because it sure as hell is not about tolerance or truth. Might be nice if they learned at least a little about the strategy and tactics of politics, too, and learned to prioritize something other than their immediate emotional reactions.

    So far we’ve lost huge amounts of ground on trans rights, reproductive rights, book banning and DEI generally. Birth control and gay rights are next. Because we are super smart and never make a mistake.

    ReplyReply
    3
  33. Kathy says:

    @just nutha:

    That’s Euthyphro’s question, pretty much: Do the gods love the pious because it is good, or is it good because it’s loved by the gods?

    Naturally the answer from those don’t-thread-on-me, absolute-freedom-loving people would be: you’re not smart nor wise enough to comprehend God’s Plan, therefore submit to His commands.

    @charontwo:

    Well, yes. but an awful lot of people, many of them awful people, believe otherwise. And we need to deal with them.

    ReplyReply
  34. wr says:

    @Michael Reynolds: “Because we are super smart and never make a mistake.”

    Seriously? This is what you’re using as a weapon today? A cheap, sleazy lie that you even say is a lie — and yet somehow it must be used to batter other people on the left? And so you’ll endorse this obvious smear and give it further life just because you feel like hating on lefties?

    How about we all agree not to use MAGA propaganda to attack people who mostly agree with us?

    ReplyReply
    6
  35. DK says:

    @Michael Reynolds:

    Yes, by all means, let’s remember that we are never wrong about anything and may not be criticized

    Wow, you really are an idiot. Or maybe you are having difficulty reading due to vision problems? Or are you just a liar?

    Nowhere did I say, “We should not be criticized” or “We never do anything wrong.” But your Twitterbrain is broken and stuck in arrested development, so per usual you see words that aren’t there.

    What *I* said is that we should be discerning consumers of media rather than falling for context-free outrage bait that misrepresents each other, the bad habit that you proceeded to demonstrate, right on cue. Exactly the point that I’m making.

    You’ve been around a while. Stupidity, immaturity, and patholgical dishonesty are not a good look at your age. Grow up.

    ReplyReply
    3
  36. Gustopher says:

    @Michael Reynolds:

    Might be nice if they learned at least a little about the strategy and tactics of politics, too, and learned to prioritize something other than their immediate emotional reactions.

    We are a broad coalition. We don’t all have the same priorities. What you dismiss as “immediate emotional reactions” are often the core, heartfelt beliefs of parts of the coalition.

    And sometimes it’s young, stupid people doing young stupid things — a near constant of our species that we have to accept and work with, rather than futilely complain about. People, especially young people, aren’t perfectly rational actors.

    If they were, then libertarianism would actually work.

    There was a time when Republicans were hurt by their racist wing. Pat Buchanan and David Duke were harmful to Republicans in the 1990s. Now they would be pretty mainstream (skipping over Duke’s KKK membership, as we still don’t like white robes), as the core of the party found a message and ideology that brought their coalition together.

    It’s a message and ideology of hate and intolerance and cruelty, but it really brought them together.

    Democrats by and large haven’t done that. I don’t think we do hate as well as Republicans, so we should have a less horrible, hateful and toxic core message.

    I see Sherrod Brown and Elizabeth Warren as two people who can craft that message, although Warren, for whatever reason doesn’t appeal to a lot of people (no penis, school teacher vibe, big syllables, take your pick) and can’t deliver that message.*

    Something that’s not the “identity politics” of giving something to each distinct group, but framing it all around freedom, particularly economic freedom (and then offering something to various groups where it fits under that core).

    ——
    *: she can’t get people to listen to her. When they do listen, she does great. There was a video ages back of her explaining “white privilege” to an angry middle aged white woman, and that woman got it at the end.

    Also, we really should have someone focus group terms, rather than use the single most off-putting term humanly possible for pretty straightforward things. It’s impressive that progressives manage to do so with such consistency.

    ReplyReply
    3
  37. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Kathy: I spent the first 3o or so years of my life living 24/7 among the sort of people you’re describing, but your observations of who they are strike me as more popular culture, literary, ironic stereotyping than what I experienced during those 30 years. And I was largely considered a troublemaker during my mid-high teen years and on.

    On the other hand, a lot has changed in 71–almost 72–years and evangelicalism isn’t what it was when I left 4o or so years ago. Moreover, what you believe will remain what you believe (as is true for nearly everyone, for that matter) no matter to what degree arguments are levied against it. It’s the nature of faith.

    ReplyReply
    2
  38. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @wr: Have you not figured out that he’s nowhere near as liberal as he imagines himself to be? Some days, I think he’s not even as liberal as I am, and I don’t think of myself a particularly liberal at all.

    ReplyReply
    3
  39. Kathy says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker:

    That’s very likely, seeing as I’ve very limited experience with Christians.

    Just the same, I’ve been told a version of “you can’t possibly understand God. Just do as you’re told,” by several people.

    ReplyReply
  40. EddIeInCA says:

    @Gustopher:
    @DK:
    @wr:

    Squad member Rashida Tlaib urges Democrat supporters to vote AGAINST ‘war criminal’ Joe Biden in November election amid fury from the left over his Gaza policy

    F**k her! She thinks Trump will be better for the Palestinians? THIS is why I bash certain progressives. Simply put, they’re unable to think strategically. Trump will be better for Palestinians??? Really? F*ck you!!!

    ReplyReply
    13
  41. Mikey says:

    @EddIeInCA: Yeah…I can’t even with her. Utter idiocy.

    ReplyReply
    3
  42. steve says:

    Sounds like the Denali story is iffy, based upon the claims of one anonymous worker. No complaints from anyone else and there are reports of flags flying at campsites. Maybe it might be met without a lot fo support is San Fran or parts of NYC if you said you loved the country But its not especially uncommon elsewhere and doesnt get booed. It is a shame that the word patriotic has been appropriated by the radical right and mostly means you hate foreigners and people of color.

    Steve

    ReplyReply
    4
  43. CSK says:

    A Memorial Day montage from Donald Trump:

    http://www.rawstory.com/trump-memorial-day-2668386071/

    ReplyReply
    1
  44. Gustopher says:

    @EddIeInCA: She’s trying to use her position and her soapbox to push Biden in a different direction, whereupon she will reluctantly support Biden.

    Shrug.

    Not everyone in the party has the same beliefs or priorities as you. She may simply not believe there’s enough of a difference on that issue to make compromising her beliefs right now worthwhile. A blank check under Biden who expresses “concern” vs. a blank check under a smiling Trump who is saying “do it! do it!”. It’s not a huge difference.

    (Biden is marginally better than a blank check, but not much)

    I can see either refusing for vote for either, or voting for the one who is better on the rest. Voting for the lesser of two evils is both voting for evil, and voting for less evil. How much less evil do you need, if that evil is still pretty bad?

    To put it in grossly simplistic terms: On a scale of 0 to Hitler, with the opponent being Hitler, do you vote for 99% Hitler? How about 80% Hitler? At 3% Hitler, I think we all vote for the 3%, but where’s the line?

    It’s really up to Biden to make the case for voting for him despite this level of fundamental disagreement. He’s got six months. I hope he does it.

    I won’t be voting for Biden. But, I live in Washington, and my vote won’t matter, so it’s a free-bee. (Freebie? Free bee? Emancipated pollinator?). I’m just going to leave President blank. If I was in Michigan, I would really have to think twice about that.

    I expect she will think twice about it, sometime in September or early October. Maybe the calculation will be different then.

    ReplyReply
    1
  45. Gustopher says:

    @EddIeInCA: if you or Biden want to write off the pro-Palestine voters, you need to find other voters to make up the difference.

    No one said Presidenting or Politicking was going to be easy.

    ReplyReply
    2
  46. EddieInCA says:

    @Gustopher:

    Her position right now is shortsighted, self-defeating, and lazy, not to mention completely stupid. This is the thinking that got us Bush in 2000 and Trump in 2016. It’s idiotic.

    Again, no strategic comprehension whatsoever. All it does is strengthen those against her, and pisses off allies. Idiocy.

    ReplyReply
    6
  47. Gustopher says:

    @EddieInCA: We got Bush in 2000 because of a butterfly ballot and poor information architecture designing that ballot. If everyone voted for who they intended to vote for, Gore wins Florida and the presidency.

    The person who could have fixed that was a UX expert. The world changed because of bad UX.

    2016 was poor polling failing to capture the strong pro-racist voting block, leading to Clinton trying to run up her lead (and help down ballot races) rather than shore up her firewall states.

    Again, poor information leads to bad decisions.

    This is very clear and very open problems in the coalition. It’s entirely different.

    And Rep. Tlaib, by making a statement now, is giving Biden every opportunity to fix it — either changing policies to the point where she can reluctantly support him, finding other voters to make up the difference, or drawing enough contrast with what Trump intends that the lesser of two evils is lesser enough.

    I think it’s a good thing if you want Biden to win* — closer to pulling a fire alarm than setting a building on fire.

    ——
    *: which, given the alternative, I do.

    ReplyReply
    3
  48. CSK says:

    @EddieInCA:

    I get the distinct impression that Tlaib doesn’t give a shit about anything but Palestine. And I agree with you that this is helping Trump.

    ReplyReply
    2
  49. Kathy says:

    @Gustopher:

    What’s Biden supposed to do? Wish the war away?

    Power rings don’t work that way.

    ReplyReply
    3
  50. EddIeInCA says:

    @Gustopher:

    We got Bush in 2000 because of a butterfly ballot and poor information architecture designing that ballot. If everyone voted for who they intended to vote for, Gore wins Florida and the presidency.

    No. We got Bush because stupid fucking Nader voters who continually complained “there is no difference between Gore and Bush”.

    Nader, both in his book Crashing the Party and on his website, states: “In the year 2000, exit polls reported that 25% of my voters would have voted for Bush, 38% would have voted for Gore and the rest would not have voted at all” (which would net a 13%, 12,665 votes, advantage for Gore over Bush).[25]

    Florida was decided by 537 votes. Nader voters are 100% responsible for Bush’s win. Fucking idiots all.

    2016 was poor polling failing to capture the strong pro-racist voting block, leading to Clinton trying to run up her lead (and help down ballot races) rather than shore up her firewall states.

    2016 was lost due to Bernie Bros and Jill Stein voters stating again that there was no difference between Trump and Clinton. It was stupid and short sighted – again. Hillary’s campaign deserves some blame, for sure, but the voters who chose to vote for Jill Stein in Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, and MIchigan deserve a lion’s share of the blame. Again, idiotic.

    https://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/308353-trump-won-by-smaller-margin-than-stein-votes-in-all-three/

    And Rep. Tlaib, by making a statement now, is giving Biden every opportunity to fix it — either changing policies to the point where she can reluctantly support him, finding other voters to make up the difference, or drawing enough contrast with what Trump intends that the lesser of two evils is lesser enough.

    Right. Biden is going to fix the problems of Hamas launching attacks against Israel and Israel fighting back? Right. That’s pure fantasy, and holding Biden to an impossible standard.

    Fix it? Really?

    ReplyReply
    5
  51. MarkedMan says:

    @steve:

    Maybe it might be met without a lot fo support is San Fran or parts of NYC if you said you loved the country

    !!!

    NYC probably has more naturalized immigrants per capital than any other big American town, and that is a demographic that is fiercely proud of the US. Plus a hundred other demographics that are equally patriotic. Don’t fall for the Republican BS that NYC is some airy fairy liberal castle in the sky and that liberals are less patriotic than other groups. Jingoism does not equal Patriotism. There are plenty of patriots there.

    ReplyReply
    2
  52. DK says:

    @Gustopher:

    if you or Biden want to write off the pro-Palestine voters, you need to find other voters to make up the difference.

    Not really. Biden is going to be fine, win or lose. So are most of us here.

    Palestinians stand to lose most under a renewed Trump-Netanyahu alliance. If that is the preference of pro-Palestinian voters, whatever. So be it.

    It’s just like the young women who thought they were punishing Hillary in 2016. Hillary has for decades been past the point of needing an abortion. So. Stupid is as stupid does, and stupid gets what stupid deserves.

    Hillary and Biden are good and will continue to be. Trump says he has some scary plans for pro-Palestinian protestors though.

    @EddIeInCA:

    Really? F*ck you!!!

    We are always hyperventilating. Rashida is wrong, but also, she can’t really harm Joe Biden. Again, we have to stop giving so much attention to irrelevant people and irrelevant nonsense.

    Same people here were freaking out over “LatinX!!!!” in 2022. Nobody cares. Americans have real problems. People can barely pay rent, the cost of child-rearing is exploding, corporations are ripping us off left and right, and Democrats aren’t loud enough about it. That’s the threat.

    ReplyReply
    1
  53. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @EddIeInCA:

    2016 was lost due to Bernie Bros and Jill Stein voters stating again that there was no difference between Trump and Clinton. It was stupid and short sighted – again. Hillary’s campaign deserves some blame, for sure, but the voters who chose to vote for Jill Stein in Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, and MIchigan deserve a lion’s share of the blame. Again, idiotic.

    On this particular point, I’ll agree with you about the stupidity, but in some minds voting for an incompetently idiotic corporatist is not really any different from voting for a competent corporatist if in those minds, corporatism is a political enemy. And for Greenies, corporatism is a political enemy. If you need those votes in close races, it may be on your team to find the way to reach out to them. I wish Biden and the Democrats well all the same. The best plan, though, is probably making sure that all of your team stays loyal. The Democratic team is bigger and can win most swing states with work.

    Maybe you should consider what leverage Tlaib, among others, has and work to gain access to that leverage. Then again, shouting “Don’t listen to the traitor!!!” may be enough.

    ReplyReply
    2
  54. DK says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker:

    If you need those votes in close races

    Do Democrats really need the votes of self-absorbed, far left fruitcakes pushing for Trump-Netanyahu II? I guess we’ll find out. I bet those votes could be had elsewhere.

    Either way, Rashida and her ilk should just cut the crap and endorse Trump. Stop beating around the Bush. Trump-Netanyahu II + more Trump judges is their preference, because Biden can only get them 70% of what they want. They should just say so. But they know they’d be exposed as selfish and stupid, so we get the political-blackmail games instead.

    ReplyReply
    1
  55. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @DK:

    People can barely pay rent, the cost of child-rearing is exploding, corporations are ripping us off left and right, and Democrats aren’t loud enough about it. That’s the threat.

    From your lips to God’s Flying Spaghetti Monster’s ear.

    ETA: And yes, that’s the connotation that “If” carries in the line you quoted from me in your next post. Very observant. And all y’all get to decide that for yourselves. Free Will rules! And if you’d read futher, you’d have seen that I include the possibility that those votes can be swapped for others.

    ReplyReply
    1
  56. Modulo Myself says:

    @EddieInCA:

    Weren’t you cheering on the idea of Gaza and the West Bank being annihilated after 10/7? Tlaib is a Palestinian-American. What kind of human is chill with genocide and then indignant when someone whose genocide you are okay with doesn’t do exactly what you want them to do? It’s a rhetorical question, btw. I know the answer.

    Gaza has just pulled the veil back on what kind of trash a huge number of Democrats are when it comes to Palestinians having the same rights as Israelis. Expecting Trump–who is obviously worse–to wash your racism away is cheap and vile.

    ReplyReply
    6
  57. Franklin says:

    @Kingdaddy: Thank you for that interesting bit of history!

    ReplyReply
  58. Gustopher says:

    @EddIeInCA:

    Right. Biden is going to fix the problems of Hamas launching attacks against Israel and Israel fighting back? Right. That’s pure fantasy, and holding Biden to an impossible standard.

    “Fix it” may be get the voters he is losing back on board, rather than solve the problem of Israel. Or find a way to get those votes he needs elsewhere.

    Lots of ways to do that.

    Most of the pro-Palestinian voters have other things they care about, which right now might be lower priorities for them. It’s hardly impossible to get those front and center.

    Alternately, get the moderate Republican voters to come over. That seems less likely, but 20% of Republican primary voters are still voting for Nikki Haley because they don’t want Trump.

    Or, make a case that Trump would be much worse in Palestine — worse enough that voting for less evil is more tolerable.

    None of this is impossible. It’s hard, but that’s the job of President.

    Regarding 2000 and 2016 — the elections were close enough that you can point to any number of things that were a significant enough effect to be the tipping point.

    You can blame the voters for not liking your candidate if it makes you feel better, but ultimately it comes down to candidates not appealing to enough voters and making the case.

    Again, it’s hard, but that’s the job of a candidate: sell themselves and their party to a skeptical field of voters.

    (And bad UX on a ballot that resulted in a very Jewish part of Florida accidentally voting for the guy who was a bit of a Nazi. Had the votes been cast as the voters intended, Gore would have won)

    ReplyReply
  59. Gustopher says:

    @DK:

    But they know they’d be exposed as selfish and stupid, so we get the political-blackmail games instead.

    Meanwhile, you and EddieInca and countless other Democrats are arguing that if they don’t just give up on Palestine, they will get Trump and it will be worse. The “blackmail” is going in both directions.

    I don’t think that really qualifies as blackmail.

    ReplyReply
    2

Speak Your Mind

*