The Dork Endorkenment


I probably shouldn’t make fun of what they call themselves — these people are dangerously wrong. An in-depth article on Vox dissects the Alt-Right, the Dark Enlightenment, the Neo-Reactionaries, or whatever the heck they call themselves today. There’s Mencius Moldbug, and Nick Land, and HBD Chick, and 4-chan, and anti-semitism, and Milo Yiannopoulous, and Donald Trump, and Gamergate — all different flavors of shit mixed into the ugliest ice cream cone ever.

There isn’t much glue holding this conglomeration together, other than elitism and hatred of others and a mass of privilege that allows them to afford being insufferable douchebuckets.

It’s Confederate History Month?


It really is! The governor of Mississippi says so, and a Republican in that fine state would never lie to you.

Fortunately, David Neiwert has been honoring the Confederacy appropriately. You should go read the whole series, it’s very enlightening.

Day 1: Strange Fruit
It Was About Slavery
That Peculiar Institution
How Poor Whites Got Suckered
The First American War Criminals
‘The River Was Dyed’
War By Other Means
Carpetbaggers, Scalawags, and the Liars Who Named Them

It was very kind of Mississippi to invite this kind of inspection of their history.

Hasn’t neoliberalism done enough damage?


Time for it to die, and for the corpses of von Mises and Hayek to be dug up, paraded through the streets, and thrown into the Tiber. Every once in a while, I get some ass who snootily tells me that his (strangely, it’s always been a man) brand of liberalism is superior to mine, and then proceeds to announce that he is a true “classical liberal” (translation: he’s a flaming Libertarian) or more rarely, that he is a “neoliberal”, although that species of conservative prefers to hide the term under a fog of economic buzzwords. I detest them all.

Now George Monbiot has written a wonderful summary of the crimes of neoliberalism, that poisonous doctrine of St Reagan and St Thatcher. It’s one of those essays where I do a disservice to it by quoting only a small portion of it — but I’ll do it anyway, just so I can tell you to go read the whole thing.

Neoliberalism sees competition as the defining characteristic of human relations. It redefines citizens as consumers, whose democratic choices are best exercised by buying and selling, a process that rewards merit and punishes inefficiency. It maintains that “the market” delivers benefits that could never be achieved by planning.

Attempts to limit competition are treated as inimical to liberty. Tax and regulation should be minimised, public services should be privatised. The organisation of labour and collective bargaining by trade unions are portrayed as market distortions that impede the formation of a natural hierarchy of winners and losers. Inequality is recast as virtuous: a reward for utility and a generator of wealth, which trickles down to enrich everyone. Efforts to create a more equal society are both counterproductive and morally corrosive. The market ensures that everyone gets what they deserve.

We internalise and reproduce its creeds. The rich persuade themselves that they acquired their wealth through merit, ignoring the advantages – such as education, inheritance and class – that may have helped to secure it. The poor begin to blame themselves for their failures, even when they can do little to change their circumstances.

It is the most pernicious and pervasive ideology of our time. I’ve been hearing a lot of it in complaints about tenure and teachers’ unions lately — “these are just efforts to give teachers job security“, as if that were some horrible abomination. Shouldn’t we aspire to give everyone job security? Isn’t it a good thing when people can rely on stable employment and income? But no, much of the public has absorbed this notion that chaos and fragility are virtues, that we need to be able to, for instance, fire people as punishment for inefficiency.

They never seem to care that the beneficiaries of that ruthlessness all seem to be the most useless parasites, the profiteers and rent-seekers and exploiters of the market. The punishment is the thing. We’re all getting screwed over, but hey, at least we get the vicarious thrill of seeing someone else screwed over even more.

This explains why John Kasich is still running for president

He’s losing badly. But from the lofty height of his own self-regard, he is the champion of all. Watch this cringe-worthy video of Kasich pompously lecturing yeshiva students about what’s really important in Judaism.

It’s being called goysplaining — he’s so oblivious that he thinks he can correct Jewish scholars on what they’re actually studying. We can’t let this man become president, because he’d be too infuriating to everyone.

We wuv you so much, Governor McCrory!

The Minnesota GOP is just as backward and ignorant as the GOP in any southern state. They recently tried to pass one of those awful bathroom bill that are the hot new fad among regressives; it got killed, fortunately. But we still got to listen to some prudish whining about safety (because transgender people are dangerous) and privacy (because peering at crotches is standard behavior in the bathroom), and lots of accusations that transgender people are the real bullies here. Watch the parade of bigots here:

They got their dreams of slapping down transgender men and women crushed, so the 35 Republican Minnesotans wrote a letter to McCrory of North Carolina telling him how much they liked him and wanted to follow his ideas.

[Read more…]

It’s the stereotypes that are toxic

Digby finds some interesting quotes. Did you know that this presidential election is about masculine vs. feminine values?

Harry Enten: I think it has more to do with society overall. A ridiculously high 68 percent of Trump supporters say society is becoming too soft and feminine. Cruz and Kasich supporters come in with 57 percent and 52 percent, respectively. Now compare those numbers with the Democratic side, where Sanders supporters were slightly less likely than Clinton supporters to say that (28 percent vs. 31 percent).

I don’t even…my first objection has to be the equation of “feminine” and “soft”, which is simply taken for granted in the question. I don’t even know what “feminine” means, or should mean — the women I know have all sorts of personalities, as do the men, and it’s simply silly to assign one stereotypical set of traits, especially an implicitly negative set, to an entire group of people and the entirety of society.

In a country where only 19% of the members of the house of representatives are women, 20% of the senate are women (an all-time high!), a third of the Supreme Court are women, and no woman has ever been president, I fully support the increasing “femininization” of our government until representation is fair and equal.

And then Digby finds another quote from a 2003 article that elevates the stereotyping to a new level of ironic absurdity.

In the House, Dennis Hastert is the Republican speaker, Nancy Pelosi the leader of the Democratic minority. Mr Hastert, a hulking former wrestling coach, is a fairly straightforward conservative: he is against abortion, gay marriage, the Kyoto protocol; for the invasion of Iraq, the death penalty. Ms Pelosi, a tiny bird-like woman, is an unabashed, card-carrying liberal.

So is child molestation one of those masculine qualities we want to increase in society?

I’d also like to know how a high school wrestling coach became a multi-millionaire. Perhaps corruption is also manly?

Liars and monsters


Robert Lewis Dear, the asshole who shot up a Colorado Planned Parenthood clinic and murdered three people, has been flapping his wretched yap again. He’s been talking about how much he admired that other asshole, Paul Hill, who murdered an abortion doctor, and he’s been saying that he was hoping to be welcomed into heaven by a swarm of grateful aborted fetuses. And of course he was influenced by those phony videos from the “Center for Medical Progress” made by sick fuck David Daleiden.

The National Abortion Federation released a report last week documenting what should come as no surprise to anyone: that anti-abortion harassment, threats, intimidation and violence have spiked dramatically since July 2015 when the Center for Medical Progress began releasing deceptively edited videos aimed at discrediting Planned Parenthood’s fetal tissue donation practices.

Despite the Center for Medical Progress’ videos having been widely discredited, and the indictment of its leader, the group continues to release videos — which federal and state politicians are using to justify invasive government investigations into abortion clinics and further abortion restrictions. This one-two punch of anti-abortion activity almost guarantees that the increased violence against abortion providers NAF documented in 2015 will continue into 2016 and beyond.

Now if you want further evidence of the hypocrisy of the Republican vermin who hate Planned Parenthood, look no further than these telling laws. Samantha Bee has noticed something strange: did you know that food stamps can’t be used to purchase disposable diapers? It’s not just punishing babies (you know, those critters they don’t want aborted, and that will be greeting Robert Dear in heaven by shitting all over his shoes), but it’s also a clever way to shackle parents, especially mothers, to their homes and making it impossible for them to find jobs.

How can you be adamant that all babies must be born, yet so callous and uncaring that you deny their mothers basic supplies for hygiene? If the Republicans were actually sincere about caring for children, you’d think they be all over bills to allow poor people to use their food stamps on something as unglamorous and useful as diapers.

After all, it’s not as if they’d be using them to buy red potatoes or spaghetti sauce.

That’s the other thing: the scum of the Republican party in Wisconsin, which is fast becoming a desolate hellhole of smug selfish bastards under Scott Walker, is now trying to pass a bill to control what things poor people are allowed to buy with their food stamps. Why? I don’t know, except that being Republican means you are compelled to meddle in the lives of others to make them more miserable. It’s a kind of psychopathy, I think.

The governor of Florida creates an attack ad…against a constituent?

I had no idea Cara Jennings was running against Governor Scott, or was so powerful and influential that she must be crushed, but I guess she is. Or maybe that public rebuke in a coffee shop was so painful that he had to relieve himself of some bile.

Here’s Rick Scott’s reply to a citizen:

I learned one thing from that ad.

Rick Scott is weak and afraid.


What I would say to Bernie and Hillary, if they cared about my opinion


Remember the long game.

In a few months, the Democratic party will hold a convention and pick a nominee. It will be one of you. Go ahead, imagine that it’s you.

You are then going to turn to the second place finisher and ask them to continue their campaigning and help you defeat the abomination that is going to lurch out of the Republican convention. You want them to agree to do so. Put everything you say now into that future context, please.

I say the same thing to all the Bernie and Hillary supporters.

I would also say something special to Bill: your wife is doing a fine job without you. Stop “helping”.