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ProfessorPlum's Journal
ProfessorPlum's Journal
June 28, 2017

Chris Cilizza shows GOP the way on healthcare

About the delay of the vote, Cilizza says:

"If there was a simple or elegant solution available to Republicans on health care, they would have already taken it! The reason health care is so difficult to change is because there are no good or easy answers. You can't simultaneously insure everyone, get rid of the individual mandate, lower premiums, lower deductibles and cut the deficit. It just doesn't add up -- or come close to adding up."

Oh but there is, Chris. Single Payer does all of that, and more. It is both elegant and simple. it insures everyone, without a mandate, it lowers premiums and deductibles and cuts the deficit. Maybe the GOP should go that way, don't you think?

June 27, 2017

We rely on the hope that, in the end, GOP voters will wake up and see what is happening

Surely, we say to ourselves, even the dummies who vote for the GOP will see that they are being threatened, impoverished, swindled, sickened, poisoned, and killed by the Republicans and the elite they serve. It's our only hope. But what does the Democratic party do to wake people up? Our population needs drastic re-education, awakening, and truth telling. Instead they see people treating Fox as if it is just another news outlet. They read articles pointing out that "both sides do it". They are trained openly to hate the people who could actually help them, and to worship their own killers.

That people could, in the future, actually tell who is hurting them remains one of our last hopes. And it isn't looking good.

June 27, 2017

The Power just lays there on the ground. And no one picks it up

The Power that would acknowledge that people are being ground up and thrown away for money.

The Power that would say people deserve to live their lives with just a modicum of security.

The Power that says the rich and powerful don't deserve the ability to make themselves more rich and more powerful by hijacking the way the government makes decisions.

The Power that supports the dignity of human life and and endeavor instead of its debasement.

The Power that says your worth as a human is not tied to the size of your bank account.

This Power, which is derisively called "demagoguery" or "populism", has only been embraced a few times with success in this country, or in any country. FDR did it. Gingerly. Slowly. LBJ did it. Cautiously. Sanders did it in the last cycle. Carefully. Elizabeth Warren did it, for a limited set of policies, before she became a senator. This power is so powerful that without a thoughtful application, it can burn into communism, anarchy, madness.

But applied correctly it gives its wielder immense opportunity to change our country and the way people are treated.

But everyone is afraid of it. The GOP doesn't want it, because right now the real political power is being wielded by their rich donors. Oh sure, they'll pretend to pick it up to give the racists rubes something to excuse their votes. "I'm for the little guy!" shouts their billionaire leader, before sticking the shiv in.

The Democrats don't want it. They know if they pick it up they will be subject to attack by the people with the power and money now. They'll be ridiculed. Called not polite. Called dangerous. And if they ever really start to use that power, they will be fought and possibly executed by the real powers that be.

Meanwhile, the citizens of the country yearn for someone to pick it up, to run with it, even for a little way, because it is the only way that we can hope to improve our country and the living conditions and the health and welfare of people we love. Sanders picked it up for a few months, and had enthusiastic followers from all ages and both parties behind him. We need more like him.

Pick up The Power, Democrats. Don't be afraid to apply it - if you use it carefully you'll have the backing of a grateful populace. Everyone knows that this has to happen eventually. We can't win by asking the system nicely to be allowed to live without fear. Obviously, the system will not give that to us without a fight.

So, who is going to pick it up?

June 27, 2017

America 2017: "They Live", only with Russians instead of aliens

Our country is now like the banquet scene in the movie "They Live", where the aliens are congratulating all of the complicit humans for screwing over their own species for wealth and power. Except at the moment, the outside force controlling our elites (and to whom they have sold out) are the Russians.

For reference, the scene starts at the 7:11 mark in the summary video below:

June 22, 2017

Jared & Ivankas Guide to Mindful Marriage (by Paul Rudnick in the New Yorker)


5. Family is everything. We treasure the special moments, like the time our kids used their crayons to make Jared a construction-paper subpoena. We have game nights, when we play such favorites as Pin the Tail on Whoever’s Out of Favor, Let’s Dress Jeff Sessions in Doll Clothes, and Who Can Hug Mommy Without Touching Her Hair?

6. We like to leave romantic Post-its for each other on our bathroom mirrors, with notes like “You’re my person of interest,” “Tonight I want you to wear your navy blazer, crisp white shirt, khakis, Weejuns, bulletproof vest—and nothing else,” and “I’d like to trademark our love and sell it to the Chinese.”

7. Love isn’t about money, influence, or pretending to walk in slow motion together across the White House lawn. It’s about glancing across a crowded reception at the other person, and smiling shyly, because both of you know that nobody can even remember who Eric or Donald, Jr., is married to.

8. Last week, we had a fun picnic with Paul Ryan and his family. We grinned as we watched Paul grab food from his kids and warn them, “You’d better not start crying or I’ll take one of your shoes.”

June 14, 2017

The Conservative worldview is the cause of almost all human conflict

Decision making and governance by progressives and liberals is driven by two main considerations

1. Do as little harm to people as possible and/or do as much good for as many people as possible

2. Treat people equally as much as possible

Most people would agree that these two tenets are the basis for a good moral code.

Conservatives, however, treat these two rules with little *asterisks next to them. The footnote says *applies to the 'right' people only.

What constitutes the 'right' people? Well, it can change depending on the situation, but they use Hierarchy, Ingroup, and Purity to determine who can be harmed and treated unfairly with impunity.

Dirty hippies, brown people, mentally ill people, etc., fail the purity test. Poor people, minorities, immigrants, etc. fail the Heirarchy test. Limosine liberals, social justice warriors, Democrats, etc. fail the Ingroup test.

Ingroup is especially interesting and elastic. If one is an evangelical protestant, Outgroup can apply to atheists, or non-monotheists, or non-judeochristians, or jews, or Catholics, or mainstream protestants, or evangelical Christians of the wrong sect, etc. It can be made to expand or contract depending on the situation. And Ingroup can incorporate Hierarchy and Purity - people below us on the hierarchy, or impure people, are surely in the Outgroup.

And so, Outgroup people can be harmed and treated unfairly (in the eyes of a conservative) with no moral problem. A black person is killed by a white cop? The victim is down the hierarchy ladder (in their eyes) both by their race and their authority, so no harm done. A white woman is harassed by her male boss at work? It would matter, except she is lower in status and gender (in their eyes). Brown, non-Christian people are blown up by white, Christian, Americans? There is no question of injustice there.

Interestingly, this makes conservatives WAY more guilty of "situational ethics" than progressives/liberals (though that is the projection they are always throwing at liberals). Because to them it doesn't matter just what the situation is, the identities of the players also really matters to them. It's why they can cry when their leaders are held to account for crimes, but viciously attack people in their Outgroup for much smaller offenses. It's why IOKIYAR. It's why progressives are much more likely to say "well, if our leader did it, then there should be consequences".

This frame that some people matter and others don't runs through our corporate media, as well, which are plutocratic dictatorships, after all.

Conflict arises from injustice. Injustice arises from the conservative worldview. And that is what keeps the human race at each others throats, for now and all eternity, world without end, amen.

June 11, 2017

THIS commercial should be the script for ALL Democrats

it was produced to support Corbyn and Labour.

But it is so much of what I mean when I say that Americans need to stand up on their rear legs and demand some respect.

June 11, 2017

Who is going to be our Jaime Lannister?

And rid us of our Mad King?

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