Archives for category: Politics

The idea that classical music is “white supremacist” is either (a) stupid or (b) an argument for white supremacy — for Western classical music is “supreme” in the arts and in music, a development not surpassed by other traditions, no matter how wonderful those other traditions be.

For the past month, I’ve been contemplating this bizarre article in The Telegraph, “Musical notation branded ‘colonialist’ by Oxford professor hoping to ‘decolonise’ the curriculum,” by Craig Simpson. It is written in a peculiar fashion and tells us of a woke brouhaha at Oxford University in Britain.

“Professors said the classical repertoire taught at Oxford, which spans works by Mozart and Beethoven, focuses too much on ‘white European music from the slave period.’” That this is dumb should be evident to anyone with a working knowledge of world history, or able to keep slightly complex ideas distinct in his or her (or zher) head. But it is a good example of how witless academics can be, so inane is this reaction to the demands of Black Lives Matter radicals. The whole article is worth reading, I suppose but, well, the issue is idiotic enough to make it hard to recommend.

Truth is, music is something almost anyone of any race can participate in, and the fine art tradition we call classical now has some of its best practitioners in the cultural “hinterlands,” not in the “white” cultural centers of Europe and America. The east in general and China in particular sports far more vibrant classical music cultures than does America, for example. America is decadent, its people largely devoted to popular music, most of it quite bad and some of it excruciatingly awful. That being said, I happily listen to and whistle in a vast musicscape that includes nearly everything from Tuva to Toronto to Timbuktu. More relevantly, studious Asian students of piano use the musical notation that one meddlesome Oxford professor has “branded ‘colonialist’” in the hopes of reforming his college’s “courses to focus less on white European culture.”

Alas, this set of ideas is everywhere, it seems — well, everywhere there are guilty white progressives and on-the-make PoC intellectuals. Popular (and usually savvy) music explainer Adam Neely made a video trying to make the case for this PC theory, but I gave up early. It is just too stupid a thesis: the basic logic problems just sit there, attentive and panting, as if eager to disprove all that follows. I commented a comment on a comment to that video:

Yes, this “classical music is white supremacist” gambit strikes me as stupid. But hey: if you want to push me into the camps of ethnonationalism, go ahead, you miserable idiots of the left.

Oh. And I am willing to argue the points. I suppose. But I first have to stop laughing.

twv

Pfizer. Always seemed like a good swear word to me.

Contra Geert Vanden Bossche — who I wrote about a few weeks ago — Dr. Michael Yeadon (pictured above), a former Pfizer Vice President and Chief Scientist for Allergy & Respiratory, sees no possibility of the much-talked-about but not the well-understood possibility of “immune escape” in the current pandemic and subsequent mass vaccination response. Yet he notes that all the talk of “variants” by official experts amounts to the same, and this is worrisome.

Suspicious. In the extreme.

And is only one of the lies being told to us.

By folks in government.

And the press.

But here is Dr. Yeadon:

[I]n the last year I have realized that my government and its advisers are lying in the faces of the British people about everything to do with this coronavirus. Absolutely everything. It’s a fallacy this idea of asymptomatic transmission and that you don’t have symptoms, but you are a source of a virus. That lockdowns work, that masks have a protective value obviously for you or someone else, and that variants are scary things and we even need to close international borders in case some of these nasty foreign variants get in.

Or, by the way, on top of the current list of gene-based vaccines that we have miraculously made, there will be some ‘top-up’ vaccines to cope with the immune escape variants.

Everything I have told you, every single one of those things is demonstrably false. But our entire national policy is based on these all being broadly right, but they are all wrong.

“EXCLUSIVE – Former Pfizer VP: ‘Your government is lying to you in a way that could lead to your death,” by Christina Valenzuela, April 18, 2021.

So of course his mind clicks to a possible explanation: an induced mass depopulation event.

My mind went there, too. Is he right? Is this suspicion on target?

I do not know. But when I read mainstream take-downs on Yeadon, like the one by Reuters, I am not inclined to think he is completely off base. There is a lot of assertion and counter-assertion in such take-downs, but no real arguments against his position.

“The ex-Pfizer scientist who became an anti-vax hero,” by Steve Stecklow and Andrew Macaskill, Reuters.

The Reuters piece would be more convincing if it actually dealt with Yeadon’s main contentions, helpfully listed by Christina Valenzuela:

Arguing against his actual positions might be convincing. But the criticisms of Yeadon I have seen so far strike me as ranging from clever propaganda to sub-intellectual journalistic garbage.

twv

“The police are simply going to stop policing.”

Conservative commentator Ben Shapiro, on his Daily Wire show, often argues that the left’s concerted attacks upon policing over the past several years have led to the recent rise in murder rates in particular and crime rates generally. Partial defundings of police departments and policing programs, and misguided checks on policing, have directly contributed to the rises in crime, Shapiro says.

“As soon as you start loosening the restrictions with regard to criminal behavior,” Shapiro asserted on Tuesday, “you get an uptick in violence.”

True enough?

Well, what if assertions of racial injustice and police bias encourage black criminals to resist arrest?

Black Lives Matter rhetoric sure looks like a case for interpreting all searches, traffic stops, and warranted arrests as oppression. And since oppression is bad, resistance is good. Sure smacks of a dangerous excuse to resist arrest.

It is in situations where suspects resist arrest that most shootings by police occur. Then the results of resistance get pushed through the corporate media’s propaganda mill as yet more evidence of racist cops, decreasing respect for lawful standards and law enforcement, which in turn leads to

  • protests, which have led to
  • riots and
  • general mayhem and looting and
  • more robbery and, yes, murder.

These social forces are not utterly mysterious. Mr. Shapiro’s repeated focus on the simplest analysis (more police=less crime) may be regrettable, for the wider-angle view that the left’s “institutional racism” mantra could have deeper effects with broad consequences.

What we may be witnessing is a cycle of violence and misinterpretation: more crime along with more dangerous police-suspect encounters that feed mistaken impressions to bolster the initial charge of racism: rinse, wring, repeat.

twv

President Joe Biden fell up the stairs, as if a metaphor for his career.

Last year, when President Donald Trump ultra-carefully walked down a ramp, corporate media “journalists” regaled us with much rumination on how old he looked. But last week, legacy media made little of Biden’s stumbling up the red carpet to Airforce One. It was opposition media that went all abuzz. The corporate halls of propaganda merely mouthed the White House’s official spin: Biden’s doing fine; he exited the plane with aplomb.

But at some point, Biden will fall down, not up.

Remember when members of the administrative state were outed as conspiring to marshal the 25th Amendment against Trump? Well, at some point that will likely happen to Biden. Is he not too old for a full term, much less two? His usefulness as a marionette will at some point cease, and the strings will be cut.

Or, as he himself suggested, he would merely resign.

But Amendment XXV may prove less important than Amendment XXII: “No person shall be elected to the office of the President more than twice, and no person who has held the office of President, or acted as President, for more than two years of a term to which some other person was elected President shall be elected to the office of the President more than once.”

If Vice President Kamala Harris is being groomed to replace Biden, the plan may be to string out Biden’s term of incompetency to two years and a day — to allow nearly a decade in office.

But whether Joe can manage to soldier on for that long, or we will witness a Weekend At Bernie’s III, is anybody’s guess.

twv

Last week, Russia recalled its U.S. ambassador. Why? The Biden administration had just put up sanctions against Russia in retaliation for the poisoning of jailed dissident Alexei Navalny. But the larger context is the Democrats’ use of Russia as its poster boy for Evil throughout the Trump period, with Biden carrying on the carping, saying that Russian strongman Vladimir Putin would “pay a price” for interfering in American elections.

But there was insult as well as threatened injury. Egged on by ABC News’s George Stephanopoulos, Biden also called Putin “a killer.”

Putin’s response? “‘I would say to him: “Be well,” I wish him good health. I say that without any irony, without jokes.”

However darkly you want to interpret that, Putin also challenged Biden to a live, public debate — and that is darkly hilarious.

Unheard of in diplomacy — but apt for the current age?

It won’t happen, of course, for Putin is in command of his faculties, while Biden is not. Besides, Putin might speak some unpleasant truths that we try not to think about.

Like: killers abound.

“You know, I remember, in childhood, when we were arguing with each other in the courtyard, we would say, ‘I know you are, but what am I,’” ABC News quotes Putin, who insisted that this taunt is “not just a childish saying. There is a very deep meaning in that.”

Was Trump’s habit of saying nice things about dictators really so bad?

twv

When will Republicans do something about so many Americans being shot, wounded and killed by other Americans? Nine killed in Atlanta and then several shot in Colorado in two shootings in the past 24 hours.

…as answered on Quora….

Odd question. Why focus on Republicans? And why mention two much-publicized shooting events and not the overwhelming number of shootings and murders in inner cities (such as Chicago) which is ongoing and dwarfs the body count of spree murders?

Take this seriously, why focus on Republicans? Democrats are in control of both houses of Congress and the presidency — and the cities where most of the routine criminality occurs. And that latter fact is even more important. Why? Crime-fighting is properly a local matter.

It is almost as if the questioner has no real interest in crime reduction but … merely seeks to ply a tired and false agenda for “gun control.”

More entertainingly, when we ask somebody to “do something” about a problem, we ask the somebody with direct connection to the problem, in this case crime. While Republicans are generally thought of as “tough on crime,” Democrats are regarded as weak and lenient — so consider, for a moment, the obvious question of responsibility: Democrats commit most of the violent crime. A supermajority of convicted criminals are registered Democrats, not Republicans.

So, the question should become when are Democrats going to do something about violence in their ranks?

But aha! They won’t. Because violence sure looks like part of a strategy.

The Democracy is now the party of anarcho-tyranny, where the plan is to go easy on violent and property crime, and then criminalize civil matters like environmental issues, business competition, socializing sans masks. The idea here is to make peaceful people the subject of police power and ultra-coercion, while letting the mob (whether antifa or looters) and criminal gangs and habitual criminals thrash about, endangering peaceful people. This ramps up demand for increasing State power and (especially) wealth redistribution, and amounts to engaging in terrorism as a means to consolidate authority behind a cult-backed group of ruthless insiders.

I am not a Republican. I have an instinctive dislike for a party that runs on a sort of inertial piety and extreme tolerance for dumb-assery. But Democrats sure seem to be pushing me into the GOP. Please, no, Democrats. No. Give up on idiotic panaceas like “gun control” and evil practices like anarcho-tyranny.

twv

I chatted with Matt Asher a week or so ago. The podcast is up:

And as a video, too:

Matt has figured out the knowledge/trust issues of our time, and explores the problems in an interesting way. I think you may enjoy this one. You may find it even helpful.

And the UFO talk is not off-topic.

Matt Asher’s podcast is The Filter, and his most recent episode, referenced in our chat, is well worth looking up.

twv

There is now talk of Russia breaking ties with the United States. Think of that.

Russia’s foreign ministry withdrew its ambassador to the U.S. on Wednesday after President Biden vowed that Russian leader Vladimir Putin would “pay a price” for his country’s efforts to interfere in the 2020 election.

A statement on the foreign ministry’s website confirmed that Ambassador Anatoly Antonov had been summoned to Moscow and warned against an “irreversible deterioration in relations” between the U.S. and Russia, warning such a move would have consequences.

John Bowden, The Hill, March 17, 2021.

Jen Psaki, White House Press Secretary, “reiterated that Russia would face consequences over the U.S. intelligence community’s assessment that Russia continued its political interference efforts throughout 2020,” according to Bowden’s article. “‘Our administration is going to take a different approach in our relationship to Russia than the prior administration,’ Psaki said.”

OK, but note which relevant country is not mentioned in this article, or its follow-up, today, “Russia warns of response after Biden calls Putin a ‘killer.’”

Unmentioned, but looking like the grayest of éminences grise? China.

International power politics is a three-cornered affair, tensions rising and falling among the three most significant powers, Russia, China, and America. While the Russian state has the weakest position in terms of population demographics and military might, under Putin it possesses a clearer vision than America does. Putin struggles for relevance, and he is placing long-shot bets on elements of Russian culture that seem utterly alien to us Americans, including, not least by any means, the Russian Orthodox Church. Putin sees himself as Christianity’s last political defender.

Some of Putin’s stances, like his strengthening of Assad’s Alawite regime in Syria, must seem strange to Americans, who can only think in outward forms of government, like “democracy” versus “tyranny.” But Putin knows what the Alawites know: formal democracy in Syria would lead to the genocide of Alawites, Jews and Christians there by the Sunni majority. Americans, top to bottom, cannot understand these things because they do not understand cultural underpinnings of politics. And, of course, Americans are Catholic and Protestant, to the extent they are Christian at all, and know nothing of Syria’s status as the birthplace of Christianity, which was neither Catholic nor Protestant at the beginning or now, nearing the end. And the Nones in America remain, of course, by and large ignorant buffoons, their buffoonery shown by their support of a senescent corrupt old coot to replace the “dangerous” authoritarian, Trump.

China’s new mission of world dominance by means of state capitalism should be less of a puzzle to Americans, since is merely a more tyrannical version of post-war America, which was itself a reboot of the British Empire. That baton of imperial authority hands off from east to the west, like the Star Prophecy, and China wants it bad, the next power in the great relay of world powers. The Mandate of Heaven goes to China, the Chinese oligarchs are certain.

And China undoubtedly had a hand in the last American presidential election. That is what is missing in these articles from The Hill. The Democratic Party is the party of China. Democrats call for the end of liberal free speech and press, and they are all in for dirigisme and class tyranny by oligarchy, though Democrats sport their own special sauce, stirring up racism to effect their revolution.

Indeed, that is along the lines of what John Ratcliffe determined:

Ratcliffe, you will remember, concluded that the Russia Collusion story was bunk — the “former spy chief” said there was “no evidence” for it. But that does not mean that Russia did not have a hand in the 2016 election . . . or the 2020 election. America is a world power, and one way to influence that power is through elections. And elections can be rigged, jiggered and gamed. Especially in America, where electronic voting machines are notoriously insecure, and where one political party says it is “racist” to insist that voters show i.d.

Now, I think most of my friends interpret the Democratic “racist i.d.” opposition to ballot integrity as a mere ploy to get more brown people to vote. I have suspected for years it is a cover to allow manipulation of vote counts by elites, party apparatchiks, and . . . China.

The Democracy is nowadays thoroughly anti-democratic and pro-China. The Clintons were embroiled in a huge China influence and money scandal that somehow (somehow!) never hurt them. Biden has shilled for China for years, and he and his son made millions off the corrupt CCP establishment.

But most Americans are too ill-informed to even suspect something could be wrong.

Which is why America is so weak internationally. The people itself are stupid, ignorant dumb-asses who do not know enough to care or be scared.

And those that do harbor dark suspicions? Why, they are “terrorists”!

Say the Democrats.

I would like to break diplomatic relations with them, too.

But we are all in this together.

Our demise will at least be interesting. The American super power will fade, or somehow experience profound eclipse, unless some Hail Mary play upends the game.

Right now, it sure looks like Biden isn’t prepared to do anything but fumble.

That does not seem to be what we can say about Xi JinPing or Vladimir Putin (though Putin is certainly under stress, shall we say). They aren’t fumblers, are they? They may be dangerous, and malign, but a fumbler in charge of a super power could be more dangerous yet.

Then again, Biden’s not exactly in charge, is he?

twv

“Why does nobody seem to bother about viral immune escape?”

…sort of a follow-up to yesterday’s….

People should be aware that there is a vaccination specialist out there who (a) thinks the technology of the mRNA treatments “vaccines” is brilliant, but is also (b) extremely dangerous, epidemiologically, in that, when used as a mass prophylactic against the current pandemic, has a strong potential to produce a highly resistant strain of coronavirus that will infect the young and could lead to a civilizational and even species threat.

Now, I cannot “vouch” for the man. His name is Geert Vanden Bossche, PhD., and he sure seems on the up and up. But I am not an epidemiologist. Still, as I blogged the other day, I understand the concept of antifragility, and I have long suspected that over-use of some medical technology could end up producing a major plague. Scientists have been warning of this for years, and it has been spun out in numerous science fiction tales, many of which I’ve read with a sort of gallows-interest enthusiasm. And here we do have a viral science technician urging world governments to stop the vaccination campaign, for the health of our species, for humanity.

Specifically, Bossche warns that “this type of prophylactc vaccines are completely inappropriate, and even highly dangerous, when used in mass vaccinaton campaigns during a viral pandemic.

Vaccinologists, scientists and clinicians are blinded by the positive short-term effects in individual patents, but don’t seem to bother about the disastrous consequences for global health. Unless I am scientifically proven wrong, it is difcult to understand how current human interventons will prevent circulatng variants from turning into a wild monster.

Racing against the clock, I am completing my scientific manuscript, the publication of which is, unfortunately, likely to come too late given the ever increasing threat from rapidly spreading, highly infectious variants. This is why I decided to already post a summary of my fndings as well as my keynote speech at the recent Vaccine Summit in Ohio on LinkedIn. Last Monday, I provided internatonal health organizatons, including the WHO, with my analysis of the current pandemic as based on scientfcally informed insights in the immune biology of Covid-19. Given the level of emergency, I urged them to consider my concerns and to initate a debate on the detrimental consequences of further ‘viral immune escape.’

PDF provided by Geert Vanden Bossche; numerous typos corrected, above and in quotations below.

I have opposed the popular “wisdom” of how to deal with COVID from at least last April, when the nature of the lockdowns became clear in the wildly moved goalposts. Since then, most folks have stuck to what their bureaucrats and politicians and public scolds have told them, usually with less knowledge of the subject than I possess. It’s all cultic tribalism on all sides now.

But you should understand what you are getting jabbed with. Start with the CDC. Its website is not outright lying. But it is propaganda.

That being said, the technology is not what most folks think it is. It does not work like a simple vaccine. And that difference could make a difference. How big? Very; extremely:

[I]t’s becoming increasingly difficult to imagine how the consequences of the extensive and erroneous human intervention in this pandemic are not going to wipe out large parts of our human population.

This is End Times stuff, really. Which is why “smart people” will resist. They are easily embarrassed by end-of-the-world predictions, since most are by kooks, are heavily ideological, or quickly proven wrong.

But Bossche’s case is quite familiar to us. The concepts he is talking about are part of the general scientific approach of our age. He is not pushing Conspiracy Theory here (though that shouldn’t make us mindless, either). He is advancing a quite-familiar approach to the evolution of contagions. Standard neo-Darwinian science.

But he is obviously worried. He says there is no time to spare, yet worries even more because, in his words, “I have not received any feedback thus far. Experts and politicians have remained silent while obviously still eager to talk about relaxing infection prevention rules and ‘springtime freedom.’ My statements are based on nothing else but science. They shall only be contradicted by science.” Yet “the elite of scientists who are currently advising our world leaders prefer to stay silent.”

This reminds me of some tragedies that occur in tyrannical societies, where the experts fear to speak up, not unreasonably imagining reprisals. Examples abound in the Soviet Union, including the infamous cases of Lysenkoism and Chernobyl.

Though we are talking a possible end to our civilization, I do think proponents of mRNA vaccines can be funny. The especially funny ones fall into two categories, as I blogged yesterday:

  1. The same people who normally extol the FDA and its long, killer waiting periods and expensive regulatory hurdles now push a drug that Donald Trump moved heaven and earth to get around, while
  2. the people who dislike the FDA because of its huge and deadly regulatory burden now like this drug since it has been pushed through — while not recognizing that it is massively subsidized, distributed by an untrustworthy government, and has a demand built up by psy-op and coercive threats, explicit and implicit.

I do not plan on taking this experiment in genetic manipulation . . . though, if the doctor is right, I may be more susceptible to the killer strain it produces than its users.

It is possible we are witnessing the greatest crime against humanity in world history, in its early stages. And the reason? Because experts and politicians will not properly consider scientific evidence that contradicts their favorite policy proposals. And they resist this, despite the dangers, because the general political culture has moved away from free speech and vigorous debate to cultic tribalism. While I have been saying that these anti-free-speech tendencies of today’s hyper-partisanship could kill our civilization, I do not remember considering that they could do so in precisely this manner, and so quickly.

But what do I know? Just go along with the flow. We all gotta die sometime.

Do we really need to all go together when we go, though?

twv

The Brazen Serpent (Numbers 21:9), Artist: Tissot; Photographer: John Parnell. ©The Jewish Museum

The current vaccination craze presents some puzzles.

Those who insist that we must have a regulatory body like the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), even if it adds great expense to drugs and prohibits many useful treatments with calculable loss of life, are the same folks who also believe that the population of the whole world should be injected with experimental gene therapy while pretending that only good can result.

Though the new therapeutics has been studied for 20 years, the studies are by no means exhaustive.

Libertarians are beset with the inverse problem: a fast-tracked pseudo-vaccine has reached the masses, and because normal FDA procedures were bypassed (by Trump), it can look like a triumph of pharmaceutical capitalism over regulatory dirigisme. But note: the drug was indeed pushed by politicians and bureaucrats, is heavily tax-subsidized, and demand for it has been whipped up by a massive panic orchestrated as a psy-op by our managerial elites, not a few of them inhabiting the corridors of power in that sector we call “the Deep State.” The explicit goal for many people inside and outside of government is to inject all of humanity with this peculiar treatment. This is nothing like a free market. It is a government operation, and the product being pushed has consequences we cannot know. But we do know that it has unknown consequences.

“Don’t put all your eggs in one basket” is a common-sense cautionary maxim.

”Don’t inoculate the whole world with an experimental gene therapy” would be that wisdom translated into the contemporary situation.

At base, here, are issues that get to the heart of medical intervention. Public goods problems abound, at this level, and they do not suggest the advisability of a uniform policy. Indeed, uniformity of policy is a very dangerous course to take. It is inherently fragile, not antifragile — and as I write this, I am more than aware that the coiner of that term, antifragility, has been a huge pusher of the COVID panic. I believe he has been profoundly wrong, because he has only conceived of the danger in one dimension. Which is a strange thing in itself, since Nassim Nicholas Taleb’s genius has been to broaden our conception of threats and menaces. In his reaction to the pandemic, Taleb has become the thing he despises, a fragilista.

But then, fragilistas have been generally ascendent. When confronted with a menace, it is hard for most people — driven by fear and with their imaginations limited enough to prevent them from considering the sheer variety and enormity of possible threats — to resist the promise of a panacea, even if said panacea makes our species and our civilization weaker. And in this case could open us up to much worse diseases with far graver consequences.

Fragilistism is the mind contagion against which our welfare-state, social-engineer dominated civilization has proven to possess few antibodies.

Pity. It has been an astounding civilization, for all its horrors.

twv