Number 361

At 11:29 AM, (President of the USA) Johnson took the unusual step of ordering the JCS (Joint Chiefs of Staff) to recall the fighters while the Liberty still lay smoldering, sinking, fearful of another attack, without aid, and with its decks covered with the dead, the dying, and the wounded. …. “…Johnson came on with a comment that he didn’t care if the ship sunk (sic), he would not embarrass his allies.”

Science

Physics and astronomy

Science is poised to adopt a new paradigm that sweeps away the dreamy speculation and errors of the present. For a painless introduction to the coming expansion of the understanding of the universe, watch this fascinating series of five brief videos (each one is about three minutes long). After you click on the hyperlink here, all five will play automatically in sequence, so all you have to do is keep skipping the periodic advertising.

Climatology

Global warming/cooling are complex subjects, and highly technical research into them continues. Meanwhile the governments of the world have decided to manipulate the atmosphere by controlling human activity. The implications of that insanely ambitious undertaking are extraordinarily important to everyone; you should understand what is happening, why it is happening, and what humanity must do to be prepared to cope with a challenging future. Fortunately there is an audio recording of an interview (conducted by a US radio station) that explains the essential facts clearly and accurately.

As rational scientists demonstrate the flaws in the concept of anthropogenic global warming, the fable seeks new expression in more complex fabrications. If you want to keep up with the topic, here is a recent contribution to the attempt to unmask mythology. Advisory: this is hard science in both senses of the word hard, for it’s (a) solid and (b) a challenge for those who are not professional climatologists. Still the average person can use this paper to gain a sense of how objective, methodical research interprets data.

An aside

“Creation science” and “intelligent design” in zoology and the doctrine of anthropogenic global warming are all faith-based. Their illegitimacy is betrayed by the fact that they begin not with questions, but with answers. The task of orthodox believers in creationism, ID and AGW is to find or craft facts that support those answers. True scientists construct theories that incorporate facts as they are discovered, and that means theories are fragile and anything but sacrosanct. For “warmers” and their counterparts who dabble very selectively in the life sciences, the theory is sacred, and always survives scrutiny. Then too, the underlying ethos of faith-based pseudoscience is guilt: man has sinned, and must pay for his cheeky disobedience.

Yes, occasionally genuine scientists do take sides, promote goofy views, argue over trivia, and succumb to crusade-inducing faith. Perhaps the best example in the social sciences is that of Franz Boas and Margaret Mead — between them, they accomplished an alarming pollution of ethnography/ethnology that had a profound but seldom investigated impact on Western European culture/society. Then there is Sigmund Freud, whose myth-like pronouncements are based in shockingly few and culturally severely restricted clinical cases. Parochial struggles do arise, and even the most brilliant minds can be vulnerable to cultic conformity and zealotry. This is Earth, not Heaven, and humans are not angels.

The Recent Elections In The USA And The Power Of The Presidency

The news media are reporting that the Republicans won big. Obama is said to be so unpopular that Democrats did not want their campaign advertising to mention him. If that’s as deeply as you wish to go in understanding the current political situation in the USA, stop reading.

A bad prediction

This newsletter felt it likely that the Senate races might not set Harry Reid aside because the Democrats would stoop to every means of election fraud. The vote tallies suggest, however, that efforts to steal the elections were weak. Why that would be is the question, for tampering with the ballots is a hallowed tradition in the USA, and its practitioners are experts. The Democrats were howling so loudly in their effort to prevent voter photo ID that this newsletter believed a new record would be set for ballot-box-stuffing and disqualification of votes for the GOP candidates.

How felonious were the elections? The world will never know, for the news media carefully ignored the subject. The only available information suggests that it was probably business as usual; there were lots of dead folks voting, some people voted repeatedly, and ballots were disqualified because they contributed to GOP totals. But only the villains know the extent of election fraud today. That and the overall GOP victory suggest that there was less tampering than this newsletter expected. (The key word there is suggest.)

While some malcontents will wonder aloud why the press took no interest in election fraud, most folks will ignore the issue. A lack of concern provides politicians with room to wax unethical, so why didn’t the Democrats win?

Because Obama’s core constituency did not bother to vote. Those people don’t care very much about races for Senate and House seats. They won’t form creepy North Korean-style choirs of tiny tots to sing the praises of Senator This or Representative That. Graphic artists do not create posters that magically appear everywhere, proclaiming the Hopenchange preached by Congressional candidates; those politicians are just politicians, not The One. Too, in the recent election, there was no need to clean up ideology that had leaked out of the Frankfurt School’s sewer.

Recall 2008

In his first campaign for the presidency, Obama employed simple-minded and sometimes alarming rhetoric to promote himself as the Steward of The Possible Dream. Utopian fantasies formed around his preachments. He was a leader, a guide, a guru, and a beacon.

Even when he candidly told the nation that he would rule with support from a domestic security force as well-funded as the current military, he did not arouse skepticism. In fact his campaign was a stunning political achievement that set a new standard for the efficacy of propaganda. A study of all the psychological undercurrents involved would expose numerous parallels between Adolf Hitler’s and Obama’s approaches to propaganda. In both cases, the rascals created dreams without too many specifics, allowing the fables to meet the vaguely-defined needs of virtually everyone. The two men implied they could deliver security, defined as the solid assurance that no matter how great the storm, the culture and the people would be safe. Both campaigns set off few alarms among honest observers, and placated rather than startled many voters who considered themselves downtrodden, disadvantaged, and entitled. Few asked what price would be paid for the security provided by an indefatigably paternalistic government; when some did ask, they were hushed with ambiguous platitudes — and told to have faith in the person of The Leader.

A magical groundswell of enthusiasm got Obama elected twice, each time as the iconic reformer who just might accomplish something. Accomplish what? Whatever the voter fantasized as beneficial.

A modern presidency that looks like a ghost from the dead past

Obama is both deluded and inspired. He perceives himself as mandated to make fundamental alterations in the values of the populace and in the goals of government. That vision has not faded. As simultaneously the guide to and the servant of a higher good, he intends to act in a manner that reminds skeptical observers (such as this newsletter) of the Nazi “Leader Principle”: the president, as the personification of the national will, creates law and imposes order.

He will do that in spite of the fact that the USA’s chief executive has no legislative authority whatsoever. That’s important because only legislation can forbid or compel the public to act, and all legislation can proceed only from Congress (the exception: suspension of habeas corpus, which can occur only under extraordinary circumstances).

To settle any issue correctly, legislation must be enacted. Those laws must be created by the proper authorities. Again: the constitution makes clear that only Congress can legislate. There can be no doubt of that. Yet Obama has repeatedly and pointedly made clear that he is determined to do what Congress refuses to do.

The One will go as far as he feels he needs to in order to assume the powers of both executive and legislative authority.

For an introduction to the clarification of Obama’s malevolent assumptions and tactics, struggle though this newsletter’s review of the comprehensive study of administrative law.

The current presidential view of the federal constitution

Obama has already noted that most of the electorate — in fact an overwhelming portion of it — did not bother to vote. He indicated clearly that this fact will be a significant justification for his forthcoming actions. He also has been clear about his frustration with Congress for its lack of “cooperation” with the implementation of his policies and ideals.

There is nothing new here. Obama feels strongly that he was put in office to impose fundamental political/social/economic changes, and of course every visionary can get testy when lesser folk do not heel on command. Obama is angry with a balky system.

The fact that the system was deliberately designed to be prudent and therefore balky means literally nothing to the Grate Leader. He has been explicit: he is contemptuous of the US constitution because he considers it incomplete and fundamentally irrelevant to most people. His complaint, spelled out to an electorate that did not grasp the import of his words, is that the old document provides only “negative” rights. It defends the populace from infringements of freedoms of speech, religion, the press and from other historically common governmental outrages. Yet the constitution does not give you a job, a living wage, free health care, a nice car, or even a house. It guarantees nothing except Liberty, and what earthly good is that to you?

Perhaps no more stubbornly ignorant and ideologically disordered person — with the probable exception of Woodrow Wilson — has ever achieved the White House.

Obama thinks free markets are ineffective, and that as president, he has the power to make laws. He considers Liberty an abstract concept, a shibboleth used by political crackpots; to him, Liberty is not the prerequisite of prosperity, amity, and progress. He’s wrong.

So: this president who whines to the Russians that he can’t afford to be “flexible” until after the election…this elected official who believes he has a mandate to restructure political and social life in the USA according to his insights…this ideologue on steroids will take action. Earlier, he flatly refused to drive an army of alien mercenaries out of the state of Arizona until Congress gave him exactly the legislation he demanded. Today he tells the citizenry that he has a mandate to create legislation and impose it.

The likely trespass

Some observers believe The One will issue a cluster of executive orders that overturn current immigration law by granting amnesty to millions of people whose current presence in the USA is unlawful.

Reality intrudes: it’s far from that simple. The laws are complex, as Obama is probably discovering. He wants people who are illegally in the USA to be treated as if their status were somehow proper, in other words, and he will try to impose his wishes.

In fact he claims that his executive power gives him discretion as to exactly how the law is enforced. That’s a superficially plausible claim that he will insist is actually profound, and he believes it allows him to limit enforcement to the point where, for all practical purposes, the law fades away. Expect Congress to react with irritation.

Here are examples of The One’s tinkering with the enforcement of the immigration law. Are they trivial, or could they be considered alterations in the law? If they are the latter, he’s exceeded his authority and acted unconstitutionally. Obviously that and related issues will have to be settled, one at a time, by the judicial system.

Some in Congress will try to find ways to tie the president’s hands; that could be done if the law is specific and detailed enough to allow for no changes in its implementation.

At present, things are murky. That gives Obama an unknown amount of room in which to maneuver and try to establish precedents that will expand his discretionary control of the enforcement of immigration law. There is a clear limit: if The One attempts to repeal any federal law by issuing an executive order that simply shuts it down, he would be behaving as if he were the literally omnipotent ruler.

That would not be just a mistake. It would be what the constitution defines as a high crime.

In this newsletter’s view, Obama will eventually — perhaps soon — be taunting Congress, tacitly daring the House to impeach him. If the Republicans take the bait, Obama will win decisively. The GOP will be disgraced, reviled, and humiliated.

So far, Obama has the lead, and the Republicans in Congress will be struggling to catch up.

Where relief is not to be found

Now assume that at some point Obama boils over, damns Congress as obstructionist, and starts signing proclamations. It would be in character.

Who, then, will try to frustrate The One, or reverse his dictatorial actions? Not the gutless, loosely disciplined GOP. The senator who is about to become the majority leader gives every sign of lacking both the requisite courage and convictions. To face Obama the ideologue in the arena, a man must have fire in his belly.

Then there is the federal supreme court. It is a ship without a rudder; because it tolerates (1) the insane distortion of the interstate commerce clause, (2) the egregious Kelo decision, and (3) the imposition of Obamacare, to name just a few embarrassments, it is properly denounced as ethically incoherent. (Yes, it could revisit and correct its mistakes, for it does not have to wait for cases to be brought to it. Anyone who believes that a hushed word here or a hint dropped there would not suffice to encourage a filing is childishly naive. From there, it’s a simple matter of certiorari, and the world would never know what actually initiated the reversal of a horrid decision.) The madcap Supremes can come up with almost anything as a verdict in any given case; that’s not principled jurisprudence — it’s a lottery masquerading as a rational defender of Liberty. Indeed, the justices will neither correct past mistakes nor protect you from a despotic federal administration. They have long ignored the obviously unconstitutional practice of executive law-making.

Now consider the press/news media (print and electronic). Would the journalists howl in outrage as the president tries to shred the constitution, or would they join him in attacking it? Might they insist that any founding law that includes the hated second amendment must be updated to give the president authority to run the country when the people stupidly clog the Congress with Republicans?

The publishers, editors, reporters, and columnists have spent years demonstrating that they are viciously censorious, bigoted and elitist. They never even managed a rational comparison of Watergate with Fast & Furious.

The remaining institution with the ability to put an end to Obama’s overweening authoritarianism is the military. Far better that the nation suffer for years under Obamoid tyranny than that the warriors consider it proper for them to seize power.

Obama might see his way clear to rule by edict. In fact each institution that might stand in his way is a line in the sand rather than a bulwark. The polity could indeed experience the consequences of manifest indifference to dictatorial hubris.

The pain would be powerfully instructive.

The solution

Effective security against presidential assumption of unconstitutional authority is presently willfully ignored though it is both known and at hand.

Accordingly this newsletter will continue to insist that if Levin’s proposals were adopted, the full benefits of constitutional governance would be available.

The president who contemplates executive orders as means to nullify constitutional governance can be frustrated. This newsletter frets that the Republicans will not be clever enough and determined enough to accomplish that.

Final questions

There are some puzzling aspects to The One’s behavior, and his motives are not clear. Why, for example, is he such an enthusiastic advocate for radical increases in immigration? What does he hope to accomplish? Is this simply a bid to create millions of new Democrats who will keep the party in power?

One should also ask how Obama’s core constituency will react to a huge influx of unskilled and semi-skilled workers. That can’t improve the circumstances of US citizens who are either currently unemployed or working for minimum wages, now can it? Doesn’t Obama care how he is regarded by the people who twice put him in office?

The next Leitmotiv of the Democrats’ opera will likely be the populist, anti-corporate neo-socialism of Liz Warren, the faux squaw who identifies with the Occupy mob. Did The One clear his demographic hi-jinks with her, or warn her what was coming? Could she be planning to court Obama’s Hispanic immigrants, and will those folks take Warren’s nineteenth century economic fantasies to be recycled Castroite propaganda? Didn’t the new arrivals want to get into the USA so they could benefit from an economy that Warren plans to dismantle?

Too, one has to wonder how the “progressive” elites will react to what could be sea changes in their party and the nation’s population. Have the Brahmans cleared Obama to press on? Or is this “Everyone is welcome” policy his bitter anti-colonialism expressing itself as an effort to end US exceptionalism once and for all — by turning the nation into a bad copy of Nicaragua?

Interesting times, eh, Pilgrims?

Those Lap Dogs

For years, this newsletter has been scolding the news media for their bias, censorship, bigotry, hubris, and unimaginative approach to commentary. It is extraordinarily hard to judge whether other like-minded critics of “news” have had a significant impact or prompted change for the better. Certainly greater scrutiny of the press has appeared in the last two or three decades, and technology has altered the scope and nature of the public debate, but…are the media gatekeepers no longer practicing censorship? If they have reformed, this newsletter has not detected the event.

One might also ask whether the electorate is better informed today (given the enhanced technological sophistication of the media, everyone should have a clear grasp of facts, and rational opinions should prevail). To this newsletter, the answer is strongly in the negative. All these hand-held gizmos, whatever they are called, do not seem to have expanded the average person’s knowledge or improved anyone’s intellect (anthropogenic global warming is, after all, still a popular concern). The media may be omnipresent, but are humans better for that? Isn’t the significant struggle to be found in the educational system of the nation, rather than in radio transceivers?

Speaking Of Education….

There was a recent video of US college students responding to the question, “Who won the Civil War?” It was shocking. How can the US electorate be taken seriously if it is generally ignorant of basic truths of history and political philosophy? It seems one might consider this proposition: “Resolved, that public education be abandoned. Society shall educate the young privately.” Those who believe in education would scurry about in panic, but would things be worse than they are today, what with the governments of the states producing millions of dismally ignorant people who have the vote?

Imagine the consequences if the tax-supported systems were defunded. Money returned to the taxpayers could go to a new private system that might do a better job. Yes, it might not…. Yet perhaps the only pupils who belong in school are youngsters who want to be in school. Compelling attendance is a variety of involuntary servitude. No one should be surprised to learn that pupils who want to go over the wire are a tremendous hindrance to the effectiveness of primary and secondary schools.

If the government is tasked with the financial support of education, it might do well to restrict itself to funding adult schools.

Back To Those Biased Media Again

This is odd: a CBS affiliate provides what appears to be a candid interview of a former CBS reporter who has some seriously negative things to say about Team Obama — and about the bias of the news media in general, and of CBS in particular. She’s written a book (ISBN 978-0062322845) that just might prove to be as important as Bernard Goldberg’s classic Bias (ISBN 0-89526-190-1). (Attkisson’s opus is a best-seller, and it’s available as an “e-book”, or whatever those things are called). You can find brief semi-literate “wingnut” comment on some of Attkisson’s anecdotes here.

This newsletter declines to predict any significant improvement in the reporting of the news. (Just today, a news item claimed that Obama had been a professor of constitutional law.) Humans are too easily locked into mindsets to find critical thinking congenial; faith and commitment are so much easier than is true skepticism. For most people, it’s just too, too easy to be a partisan, and hope to sucker-punch the opposition.

Links Courtesy Of The Tramp Abroad

I guess the plan is for state-run child-care centers to rear children. Hmmm…that reminds me of a (now defunct) workers’ paradise, the GDR/DDR.

Sunday the ninth of November, 2014, was the 25th anniversary of the “fall of the Berlin Wall”. In reality the barrier was peacefully stormed by the East German citizens (Berliners). In less than two minutes this animation very accurately depicts the history of the Berlin Wall, from its construction in August 1961 until its “demise” in November 1989. (Ed: the chilling animation is superb — not to be missed!)

Related: it is highly recommended that you watch this very topical interview that was broadcast on ARD. The essential points are subtitled, so you will have no problem understanding it. All of the participants in this program were directly involved in the events that transpired on 9 November 1989. Comments?

Toccata and fugue in D minor-Bach-BWV 565 performed on a glass harp: the artist, Robert Tiso, is so good with glasses, I’d bet he used to be a bartender.

For colorfully imaginative history buffs: here’s World War One summed up in what is very much like a description of a barroom brawl. You are welcome.

This just wants to make you go up and (sarcasm on) give the cop a big ol’ hug and an “atta boy” pat on the back. Of course Uncle Sam can take much better care of the needy (sarcasm off).

Ordinary Links

What is wisdom? It is impossible to define, but here is an example of it. Be prepared to spend a half hour.

Today’s quiz: what G-rated word genuinely applies to this fellow, yet manages to convey the lie that he’s not a poster boy for the typical mealy-mouthed, deceitful, cynically fascistic Obamite? Keep in mind, please, that Chief Justice Roberts said that Obamacare is, both legally and for all other intents and purposes, a tax. (Answer: there is no such word.)

Oops, there goes California…maybe: the NRA exults over a favorable court ruling. Attention muggers, car-jackers, home invasion robbers, and wacko kid-killers: you had better do your worst now, before John Q. Public is permitted to carry. California might even see an end to “gun-free” zones, and then where will you find a safe place in which to prey on decent folks? (Everybody else should recall this newsletter’s question: would you rather live in a neighborhood where many ordinary people carry concealed firearms daily, or one in which the only people with firearms are either criminals or cops?)

Here are links to three more scientific papers on carbon dioxide and ocean temperatures that the major media will totally ignore. (Heavy sigh.) One, Two, and Three.

If you don’t have enough to worry about, you should learn more about gold. The documentary at the link will get your next ulcer started.

It appears that the anti-firearms campaign lost heavily in the recent US election. Was this widely reported, or was the defeat downplayed by the major news media?

Did Reagan really have cancer, and get it cured in Germany?

From the O tempora! O mores! Department: according to the current nihilistic paradigm, some words of wisdom, such as Eric A. Blair’s “Power is not a means, it is an end. One does not establish a dictatorship in order to safeguard a revolution; one makes the revolution in order to establish the dictatorship”, must be remembered. And why is that? So that the principles underlying the American Revolutionary War can be mocked and dismissed, along with the reasoning manifested in the US constitution. Too, some pronouncements, such as these from Christopher Hitchens, must be forgotten — lest they be understood, thereby exposing the madness that currently prevails. How interesting, therefore, that Hitchens so admired Blair that he wrote a book lauding him.

Maybe Hillary does stand a chance to become president after all….

A “wingnut” explains the re-election of the governor of a typically “progressive” US state and argues for more reform.

A revolution in science is coming, and part of it will dispense with string theory. “Black holes” and the “big bang” will go, and Fred Hoyle will be in vogue again, although some of his ideas will have been trimmed. These clarifications will ignite some bitter disputes in astronomy, physics, cosmology, and cosmogony — as well as function as inflammatory provocations of the True Believers contesting in the arena of faith. Never mind, for whatever disposes of the shockingly medieval concepts of “dark matter” and “dark energy” will be welcome. Most importantly, there is a good chance that the layman will regain a reasonable understanding of what scientists are saying — for a lot of the new science will be experimentally-based. No, Maxwell won’t be tossed out, but Hawking’s nightmarish nonsense will be refuted. (Remember these predictions, Pilgrims.)

More science: don’t count on fusion power in your children’s lifetimes, even if your offspring are toddlers.

If you think the NSA has not tried to figure out who created this, you have not been paying attention. Note that the video is virulently hostile to both W and The One: Anonymous is not a Tea Party clone.

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