Cause and Effect..

From my morning news browse I noticed this article from which I’d like to quote this bit:

“It has been widely reported that there has been more money spent on this House race than any other in American history, and the bulk of those dollars are not coming from the state of Georgia,” the moderator said to Ossoff. “Is that wrong? What are your thoughts on that?”

Ossoff responded by saying “it’s a major problem” and that “there’s far too much money in politics.”

Well, you see, Ossoff’s response is simply not true. There is not too much money in anything, because people use money in accordance with their desire. We often complain that we’re paid “too little” or that the cost of a good or service is “too much.” With what wages we get we divide up our income among all known potential purchases, buy the things that are priced lower or the same as we’re willing to pay, and don’t buy the things which cost too much. Which is to say, that while there is a lot of money in politics, it isn’t too much from the standpoint of the people putting money in politics. And while I see politicians such as Ossoff complaining about it in public, it isn’t as though they turn any of it down.

It isn’t that there is too much money in politics, as saying there is too much money in anything is just denigrating people’s preferences, then perhaps there is something else. If people are putting money “into politics,” it must be that they see value in what they’re putting in. Isn’t it that politics itself has so much power that people want to put in money to bend that power to their own set of preferences?  I mean, even if I write a thousand dollars worth of content (judged on being paid for it) on the subject of the evils of Obamacare or how great it is, wouldn’t doing something else and spending a thousand dollars getting a senator who shares my views elected be a better use of time?

Certainly the kind of people who’d want someone like Ossoff in office have made their millions elsewhere (I meant in fields other than politics, but “not in Georgia” is also correct) and spent it in a way that is most likely to accomplish what they desire. Because obviously, it doesn’t matter if the people like or hate something so long as the politicians like or hate something. And that, friends, is the problem. It isn’t that there is too much money in politics, it is that there is too much power in politics, and thus people find it a sound use for their money.

But, on the subject of people looking at things the wrong way, let me offer this as well.

Trump wants to gut a key division of the Department of Energy designed to accelerate the development of clean energy like solar and wind power.

No, he doesn’t want to gut a key division of the Department of Energy designed to accelerate the development of clean energy, he wants to gut a division designed to accelerate the deployment of clean energy. Which is to say, even if the technology is not ready, even if the technology will never be ready, they want it to be everywhere. But the justification has been more feeling than reason. Let me say this. You don’t have to entice people to make or save money. The way they’ve been accelerating the deployment of so called clean energy (because they never count the pollution contributed by manufacturing) is by making it cheaper. Not though the availability of some new technology that improves the transmission or storage of energy, but by taking our money, pulling out a little for themselves, and then giving it back to us. Look, we’re doing a good deed by giving you money that you earned and might have spent on something else. Aren’t we awesome.

People tend to look at things in a way that benefits their worldview. Not (usually) in the progressive, “everybody has their own set of facts!” way. But still, they tend to filter out the down side. For instance, the down side of money in politics is that politicians have an incentive to become even more powerful. Ultimately this is what corruption is so rampant in world politics… because the more direct the influence, the more valuable. I never claimed money in politics was a good thing, I just argued that there isn’t “too much.” Most of the incentives in politics is toward gathering power anyway. The down side of doing away with tax incentives for green energy is the people who think that it’s a good thing will be unhappy… well, okay, there isn’t really a down side there, unless any of them were voting for Trump. I can’t see that as likely.

Well, anyway, when someone is making an argument before the masses, they’re going to tend to do so in a fashion that aligns with their own interests. Ossoff’s response, which was basically, it’s a pity, but everyone is doing it so I can’t possibly stop it without doing it too! The cries of people with a vested interest in green energy about how terrible it would be for everyone if their gravy train dried up. My interests are in economic efficiency. But well, the difference is, I’ll tell you that up front.

 

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“We know the cause of gangs is not immigration because there are plenty of non-immigrants who are in gangs.”

Tucker Rips Open-Borders Activist: ‘You’re Impervious to Facts’

No one said that immigration was the cause of gangs, we’re only saying that a lot of gang members in this country illegally immigrated here. We’d like to prevent that, as our society already has enough thieves and murderers. Rather One is already too many. One of the consequences of being flippant about illegal immigration is that we gain a bunch of criminals that wouldn’t have been here otherwise. Generally preventing people we don’t want for whatever reason from being here is the reason we have immigration laws in the first place.

and of course

“…resist the rhetoric of criminalization coming down from Washington.”

Uh.. illegal immigration is already a crime. We aren’t criminalizing it. That was done long ago. Because we have a right to determine who will be allowed to join our society. Many of the nations we have a problem with illegal immigration from have rougher immigration laws than we do.

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Snoops and Bill Nye

There is an article here covering the question “Does Dolph Lundgren have multiple scientific degrees” due to a meme comparing Bill Nye’s background and finding it wanting.

Comparing Nye and Lundgren is also problematic. The meme appears to insinuate that Nye is not qualified to host a television show since his educational background does not match or exceed Dolph Lundgren’s.

That isn’t the problematic part, nor is it about his qualifications to host a show. Rather, it is about his qualifications to talk about scientific issues outside the context of his show. He is no more than a layman on issues he’s been invited to talk about by the media. Ultimately if his show has good science is down to his writers and advisors. If what he says while being interviewed by CNN is good science, he isn’t qualified to judge, but by using him, who is no more than a science enthusiast they make it as though he was an authority.

I seem to recall the left is angry because we no longer trust experts. The left also wheels out a mechanical engineer who hasn’t worked in his field in years as an expert. You wonder why experts aren’t trusted? This is why.

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Washington Post

Washington Post’s new slogan, “Democracy dies in darkness,” is well timed indeed with the various mentions going around the Internet of the shadow government. In the case of Trump, the members of congress, etc, they’re elected officials. When they do things we don’t like, we can fire them. The shadow government? They’re the thousands who were picked by the prior administration or hired in by the like minded. The will of the people has little to do with their continued employment. Even our representatives rarely look too closely.

If their slogan is supposed to be a taking of arms against Trump massively censoring news ah-la … well, any number of dictators that they don’t traditionally hate… Trump isn’t trying to suppress the news. People can recognize what suppressing the news actually looks like. It does after all happen all over the world. At worst, as they’ve been attacking him since before the election even happened, he’s been hitting them back in kind. In kind, but we’re not seeing the FCC revoking licences. As someone who has followed the news in Venezuela since before Chavez came to power, what has been happening in the spat between the press and the White House is nothing like it. They’re complaining he’s going after their reputation as they go after his. The media is no more above criticism than elected officials. If anything, they should be criticized more. When they’re wrong, we make bad choices about hiring and firing the politicians, after all.

But the darkness that democracy dies in is not the one where people can’t get information about what their elected officials are doing; it is when the elected officials themselves don’t actually matter. In Saddam’s Iraq, even when the people were informed how they voted was irrelevant, but they were still being told lies. In Iran, most of the bringers of light are in fact holding a hypno-beam. In the Soviet Union the government was secretive, but needlessly so, as any criticism usually ended in gunshots. Propaganda for or against the government has taken place all over the world, and has generally been at the hands of the press. Sometimes they’re loyal, sometimes they’re oppressed. But just being the press isn’t an assertion of moral greatness either.

From fiction, in Hitchiker’s guide one of the main characters was the president of the galaxy. At some point it was decided that no one who wanted that role was fit to have it, so he actually had little to no power at all. We aren’t at that point, obviously, and I’m not saying that we’ll come to be at that point either, but it is true that far more people have far more control who are far more removed from the people than was ever intended. In particular because someone decided that practically any activity that you do which could have potentially generated a sale to or from another state could be considered interstate commerce. Growing wheat on your own farm to feed your own animals? Interstate commerce.

When policy and law are created by those who are unelected is the true darkness which will kill democracy. For the presidency to be part of “the darkness” he’d have to be unaccountable. You want a President like that, look more to FDR or Woodrow Wilson. Hell, Obama’s pen and phone were far less legitimate than anything that the Trump White House has done. But even so, the White House’s power is limited, because no matter how talented the individual, it’s difficult to pay attention to that many things at once.

On the contrary, people like the EPA being able to set rules that affect millions in investments without congress or the President actually doing anything. They are an army of thousands who are focused on the subject of their interest. And their interests need not have anything to do with ours. Or in the case of Europe, the central government actually isn’t picked by the people at all.

But, back to the Post and journalism in general, these various leaks from government offices filled with unelected bureaucrats, edicts from three letter agencies that affect everything from resources to housing to education to school lunches- these actions are generally supported by the press, which claims to be a source of light. Perhaps they should rethink. If Journalism is the light, they’re a film noir sort at best. Their light shines at those they dislike, but like a fun-house mirror it doesn’t cast a true image, and at the same time, it casts long shadows for those they like to do their evil.

So, Democracy dies in the darkness, eh? When you support those working in shadows, act as though you are part of the opposition party with bi-lines while offering propaganda for their side freely, and indeed, cast long shadows to cover the failings of the prior administration while pointing out the non-failings of the current as though they were evil, I wonder.

Is your slogan supposed to be you banging your chest claiming your support of Democracy? Or your threat to end it?

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FBI Is Investigating About 300 Refugees For Terrorism | The Daily Caller

http://dailycaller.com/2017/03/06/the-fbi-is-investigating-approximately-300-refugees-for-terrorism/?utm_source=webpush

Thanks Obama.

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Nuanced

Nuanced is a word I’ve been hearing a lot lately. They mean to portray to others that their words are “characterized by subtle shades of meaning or expression.” but in many of the cases that I’ve seen it used, the internal meaning seems to lean a litttttle more toward “an alternative explanation that seeks to deceive.

See how many times you see Democratic operatives and CNN (but I repeat myself) used nuanced in the next twenty four hours. You’ll be surprised.

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Anarchy is the art of thinking you can beat organization with disorganization.

Two More Anarchists Arrested in #DisruptJ20 Plot

“The message has to be, we do not recognize the city government either,” Kuhn says. “If you try to close us down we will look for your house, we will burn it. We will physically fight the police if they try to steal one of our places. We will go to war and you will lose.”

Silly anarchist, the message can be whatever you want, but the facts won’t change. What is it with the left and thinking that messaging can dictate reality? And aren’t anarchists supposedly opposed to property ownership? “…Steal one of our places.” First, not yours. Second. You smell that? That is the smell of ideological inconsistency.

“…To war…” You and what army? The battle between civilization and its opposite has a long history and a long future,  but in general, for the last few thousand years, civilization has won when it bothered to fight. It is the nature of human organization to protect its existence, until the humans in it either feel it is too ill to endure, or the spirit of the humans in it looses its vigor.

As long as the government is willing to protect order the scale of force available is magnitudes apart, as most people are conservative in the sense they want society to exist tomorrow.  Rather than worrying that these people have any power, the real worry is that they seek power, and would employ violence to get it.

But then, that also isn’t really a worry. Such forces are easy to overcome. The only real worry is that those we’ve entrusted with protecting civilization might refuse to do so. In various cities with leftist governments, such groups have been allowed to fester, commiting violence and property damage without much response. Civilization when it defends itself is nearly all powerful. But the trick is, it must defend itself, or it will die.

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