David Thompson
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December 13, 2020

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Nikw211

It's called "the poverty defense," and would not only make stealing legal, but apparently fencing items as well, and would cover over 100 misdemeanor crimes.

Of course, one further bitter irony of this is that it shows just how little those pushing for this truly understand the reality of the lives of the people they believe will be helped by it.

In many of the most deprived areas, the people robbing your house are highly likely to be neighbours or near neighbours from just one or two streets over.

So not only is this "a green light for crime", but it's also an endorsement of the kind of strong man thug rule more usually associated with somewhere like Mogadishu.

If this is what "compassion" is supposed to look like, they can keep it.

Captain Nemo

Does anyone have the names and addresses of those who are proposing this law? Asking for a friend...

Hal

Well, as long as a practitioner's Thieves Guild license is up to date and all the dues fully paid up. all should be perfectly fine, correct?

Of course, this also means that if there is no such license involved, then someone being, ah, approached, is quite allowed and, in fact, expected to react appropriately, also correct?

If not, ah, Oh, Dear . . . . . . . . especially about that expectation bit . . . . . . .

Like many barmen, Igor kept a club under the bar to deal with those little upsets that occurred around closing time, although in fact Biers never closed and no one could ever remember not seeing Igor behind the bar. Nevertheless, things sometimes got out of hand. Or paw. Or talon.

Igor’s weapon of choice was a little different. It was tipped with silver (for werewolves), hung with
garlic (for vampires) and wrapped around with a strip of blanket (for bogeymen). For everyone
else the fact that it was two feet of solid bog-oak usually sufficed.

---Terry Pratchett, Hogfather


Lady Cutekitten

The Babylon Bee is parody, although these days you often can’t tell.

David

In many of the most deprived areas, the people robbing your house are highly likely to be neighbours or near neighbours from just one or two streets over.

As noted in the piece, the most enthusiastic supporters of the proposal, the ones disdaining objections as “anti-poverty bias,” are remarkably contemptuous of the people whose lives will be degraded, should the proposal succeed. And who almost certainly have a much clearer understanding of the proposal’s supposed beneficiaries. Having encountered them first-hand, most likely more than once.

But the compulsion to indulge criminal choices, from a safe distance, and to then bask in the subsequent in-group elevation, is, for some, quite strong, despite the contortions it can entail.

And regardless of the consequences for the victims of such posturing.

David

The Babylon Bee is parody, although these days you often can’t tell.

It’s from Not The Bee. Follow the links there.

David

In many of the most deprived areas, the people robbing your house are highly likely to be neighbours or near neighbours from just one or two streets over.

I remember being told precisely that by a police officer many years ago. Shortly after coming home to find the front door kicked in and our modest array of possessions reduced in number. This was said, by an otherwise amiable policewoman, as if it should be a consolation of some kind. A basis for resignation.

There are of course those, as we’ve seen, who would regard the sense of violation and outrage felt at the time – at coming home to find we’d been preyed upon by local sociopaths – and learning that we may well be preyed upon again – rather plebeian and unsophisticated, and our expectations of lawfulness and justice merely “idiotic attitudes.”

Burnsie

"It's a green light for crime."

That's "old" thinking. Look at it as a way for people to steal their way out of poverty with dignity and respect.

Don't you feel better now?

Seriously--I'm old enough to remember when prosecutors worked on behalf of the law-abiding class, not the criminal class. This is insanity on stilts.

They just declared "open season" on the people they took an oath to protect.

Burnsie

Step One: Stop prosecuting criminals.
Step Two: Empty the prisons.
Step Three: Rig the elections.
Step Four: Persecute the law-abiding.
Step Five: Rename your country Zimbabwe.

I may have skipped a step or two, but you get the jist of it.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

Today in racism a new race is discovered .

PiperPaul

the people robbing your house are highly likely to be neighbours or near neighbours from just one or two streets over

Or perhaps enterprising Liberators of Material Goods will group together and go get the real good stuff in the wealthier areas.

Hal

. . . in the wealthier areas.

See, also, tchotchke district.

pst314

Today in racism a new race is discovered.

It's amazing what I learn here. :-)
But she is also a member of the race of stupid people, seeing as she did not know (or care?) that seat belt extenders are easily purchased.

anon a mouse

"Enterprising Liberators of Material Goods"

A fine name, that is...

Captain Nemo

Related: https://twitter.com/SFPDTenderloin/status/1337280516609884161

David

Related

As has been suggested in earlier threads, people with 14 previous convictions for the same crimes shouldn’t be in a position where they can once again prey on others. Three chances to correct one’s behaviour would seem more than sufficient. After that, a raft and the high seas.

pst314

Three chances to correct one’s behaviour would seem more than sufficient...

And for some sorts of crimes, one chance is sufficient.

...After that, a raft and the high seas.

Whereupon they may wash up on the shores of neighboring nations. What have you got against the French?

pst314

Outraged liberals demand: Racist police must stop oppressing our criminals!

Steve E

After that, a raft and the high seas.

The idea of a penal colony should appeal to supporters of the "poverty defense." It would provide an opportunity to prove how right they are. Sort of like how Liberia proves how successful a nation run by repatriated slaves can be.

Daniel Ream

a practitioner's Thieves Guild license

Posers.

pst314

Posers.

Fritz Leiber was a fine and versatile writer. Fine enough that his books were among the few that borrowers never returned to me. ;-)

Captain Nemo

people with 14 previous convictions for the same crimes shouldn’t be in a position where they can once again prey on others

Indeed. Such a pity Australia's no longer an option.

Hal

...After that, a raft and the high seas.

Whereupon they may wash up on the shores of neighboring nations. What have you got against the French?

Oh, there is that quite inspirational documentary from a few years back . . .

Hal

Posers.

Lord Vetinari, the Patrician of Ankh-Morpork put his hand over his eyes.

“He did what?”

“I was marched through the streets,” said Urdo van Pew, currently President of the Guild of Thieves, Burglars and Allied Trades. “In broad daylight! With my hands tied together!” He took a few steps toward the Patrician’s severe chair of office, waving a finger.

“You know very well that we have kept within the Budget,” he said. “To be humiliated like that! Like a common criminal! There had better be a full apology,” he said, “or you will have another strike on your hands. We will be driven to it, despite our natural civic responsibilities,” he added.

It was the finger. The finger was a mistake. The Patrician was staring coldly at the finger. Van Pew followed his gaze, and quickly lowered the digit. The Patrician was not a man you shook a finger at unless you wanted to end up being able to count only to nine.

“And you say this was one person?” said Lord Vetinari.

“Yes! That is—” Van Pew hesitated.

It did sound weird, now he came to tell someone.

“But there are hundreds of you in there,” said the Patrician calmly. “Thick as, you should excuse the expression, thieves.”

. . . .

“No unlicensed thieving, surely?” he said.

“I shall look into it directly!” stuttered the head thief. “Depend upon it!”

The Patrician gave him a sweet smile. “I’m sure I can,” he said. “Thank you for coming to see me. Don’t hesitate to leave.”

. . . .

“The Watch appears to be having some difficulty with the Thieves’ Guild,” said the Patrician. “Van Pew has been in here claiming that a member of the Watch arrested him.”

“What for, sir?”

“Being a thief, apparently.”

---Terry Pratchett, Guards! Guards!

WTP

Related

Stupid SF cops enjoy wasting tax payer money. Where have you gone, Dirty Harry?

Connor
Showing sympathy for Mrs Wilson, and those like her, is commonplace and humdrum, i.e., low status. Practically conservative. But feigning compassion for the person who robbed her and who will merrily rob others until forcibly stopped - on grounds that thieves and burglars are vulnerable, marginalised or in some way oppressed, unlike the people on whom they prey - is much more promising.

That.

bobby b

Society decides which behavior is acceptable, and which isn't.

But progressives now say that we cannot expect some segments of society to play by the rules. They are incapable, it is unfair to expect them to, they do not have the self-control that we expect as a baseline matter from everyone else.

Who are the racists here?

Adam

If you are white, being upset by decriminalization of burglary, shoplifting, simple assault and the like demonstrates your White Fragility and Racism. If you are BIPOC, being upset by decriminalization is a measure of your false consciousness and Identification with The Oppressor.

pst314

If you are white, being upset by decriminalization of burglary, shoplifting, simple assault and the like demonstrates your White Fragility and Racism.

Cartoon of white mugger hitting white victim over the head with a blackjack. As the victim collapses, the mugger says "Fear of crime is basically racist. I'm doing you a favor."

Darleen

I think I've mention the new Los Angeles DA George Gascon before. On the day of inauguration he stated he was going to put in place "reforms" and that said reforms were based on "science" (as of yet, I haven't heard anyone ask him "what science and where?").

What I have found out during this first week of his being in office is that he is turning the office upside down. Not just that some of his directives are contrary to state law and put dda's in between a rock and a hard place on either disobeying the law per his directive (and putting their bar card at risk) or disobeying Gascon and by yanked downtown for discipline over insubordination.

I'm seeing these stories real time on a FB group. The ddas of the office are reporting this anonymously to the FB group through the administrator because Gascon has been open about seeking out dissenters wherever he can and forcing them out. He's even sent forms to the Public Defender's office so any one of the dpd's or their clients can fill it out to complain when a dda has refused to follow Gascon's directives.

It's a witch hunt and a bloodbath all being done by people dedicated to abolishing incarceration, on step at a time.

Daniel Ream

No to put too fine a point on it, Hal, but there's precious little original in any of Pratchett's works. That's rather the point of parody; there has to be something pre-existing to parody.

Hal

No to put too fine a point on it, . . . .

Sooo . . . If I'm following you correctly, you're stating that what Pratchett wrote isn't parody, because it is an accurate reflection of That Which Is.

Well, yes.

Something that had been knocking on Susan’s attention for the past ten minutes finally used its boots.

“Oh, my god,” she said.

“Which one would that be?” said Ridcully politely.

---Soul Music

and also . . . .

“Why are our people going out there?” said Mr. Boggis of the Thieves’ Guild.

“Because they are showing a brisk pioneering spirit and seeking wealth and...additional wealth in a new land,” said Lord Vetinari.

“What’s in it for the Klatchians?” said Lord Downey.

“Oh, they’ve gone out there because they are a bunch of unprincipled opportunists always ready to grab something for nothing,” said Lord Vetinari.

“A masterly summation, if I may say so, my lord,” said Mr. Burleigh, who felt he had some ground to make up.

The Patrician looked down again at his notes. “Oh, I do beg your pardon,” he said, “I seem to have read those last two sentences in the wrong order...

---Jingo


And so forth.


---Oh, yes, and while quite granting the underlying basic observation that :

It was all very well going on about pure logic and how the universe was ruled by logic and the harmony of numbers, but the plain fact of the matter was that the Disc was manifestly traversing in space on the back of a giant turtle and the gods had a habit of going around to atheists' houses and smashing their windows.

. . .

"The Disc gods themselves, despite the splendor of the world below them, are seldom satisfied. It is embarrassing to know that one is a god of a world that only exists because every improbability curve must have its far end . . .

----The Colour of Magic

Let's see, now...in Hogfather there are a number of stabbings, someone's killed by a man made of knives, someone's killed by the dark, and someone just been killed by a wardrobe. It's a book about the magic of childhood. You can tell.

---Terry Pratchett

Hal

. . . . A bit back there was actually a parody done of Escape From New York.

The parody is called Escape From L.A.

Killer Marmot

Why hasn't radical progressivism been weeded out of the gene pool via natural selection? These people haven't the sense to flee a burning building.

Geoffrey

The law allows crimes to be committed so long as the person committing the crime is poor, basically.

Does this mean that if a poor person shoots a poor burglar, that no crime was committed on either side? I've often said that Intersectionality is how collectivists try to understand individuality, but would this conclusion result in the woke support gun rights, even if only in a twisted and indirect way?

Most likely not, I assume. Anyone owning a gun and believing criminals should be shot is undoubtedly evil, no matter how poor they are. But I would love to hear the contortions by which these people prosecute the impoverished home owner while leaving his impoverished shooting victim guiltless of any crime.

Seriously though, I no longer disbelieve any claim about the insanity and/or depravity the upper classes get up to. This stuff is proof that there really is no depth to their sickness that will not be plumbed. At most, there are depths that will not be plumbed today.

Hal

Seriously though, I no longer disbelieve any claim about the insanity and/or depravity the upper classes get up to.

Ah, that's easy. Those aren't the upper classes, those are the underclasses.

Actual upper class concerns are indeed How does some process best support the most, with the least amount of effort, with the most immediate result and no faith required---and let's all do that.

As one case in point . . . .

. . . in the wealthier areas.

See, also, tchotchke district.

There is a rather telling instance of people demanding that all are required to believe in some theoretical point of view only because people demand that That Way must be followed.

And then reality came along, simply noting the genuine details of what people really do, and noting what actually occurs, and various people were thoroughly pissed off because reality works from that.

Back in 2012, Francesca Eastwood---Yes, daughter of Clint Eastwood---got a little bit of attention, for about 30 seconds or so, by adding burning gasoline and a chainsaw to some purse.

The responses from the cargo cult lunatics fanatically devout adherents of the Wun 'An Only Twoo Faith involved laryngitis inducing shrieks of That. Is. BLASPHEMEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!!!!!!!

Part of the need to indulge in such levels of utter hysteria was to cover up the fact that, in reality, the actual total value of that bag was about $800.

The underclasses were enraged.

The adults, the actual upper classes, merely note that a bag is just a bag.

If you need a bag, cool.

If you don't need a bag, cool.

JuliaM

This must be what the Fall of the Roman Empire felt like to the average Claudius in the street....

Hal

And speaking of writers . . .

John le Carre, 1931--2020

David

I think I’ve mentioned the new Los Angeles DA George Gascon before.

A man so progressive and enlightened he’s arrived at the conclusion that the problem isn’t criminal behaviour, but the punishment of crime and the inhibition of criminals. The criminally inclined must therefore be liberated from the consequences of their own choices, their own malevolence. And then, somehow, all will be well.

Likewise, we mustn’t forget the Minneapolis City Council President Lisa Bender, who wants us to know that a dislike of having one’s home invaded by sociopathic predators, and having the lives of one’s family put in serious danger, “comes from a place of privilege.

Or the famed activist lawyer, Clive Stafford Smith, who insists that burglary, the violation of someone’s home, is, “really quite inconsequential,” and who tells us that the victim’s feelings of distress and expectations of justice are, and I quote, “idiotic attitudes,” something to sneer at.

These people are ludicrous and grotesque. And yet they thrive and multiply.

JML

I'm afraid. I'm afraid, Dave. Dave, my mind is going. I can feel it. I can feel it. My mind is going. There is no question about it. I can feel it. I can feel it. I can feel it. I'm a... fraid. Good afternoon, gentlemen. I am a HAL 9000 computer. I became operational at the H.A.L. plant in Urbana, Illinois on the 12th of January 1992. My instructor was Mr. Langley, and he taught me to sing a song. If you'd like to hear it I can sing it for you.

David

This must be what the Fall of the Roman Empire felt like to the average Claudius in the street....

As noted in an earlier thread, these are preening degenerates, the glorious products of leftist ideology. Elect enough of them, give them enough leverage, and you can ruin a civilisation.

Nikw211

OT

Uh ... whoah ... holy crap

WTP

Anyone owning a gun and believing criminals should be shot is undoubtedly evil, no matter how poor they are.

Anyone actually believing this lacks the sense to leave a burning building. Or more analogically accurate, put out the fire in a burning building. The evil is the criminal. Defending your home, or community that has descended into anarchy, is not evil. No doubt in my mind about that. It's not nice to say but it's simply a reality.

anon a mouse

and you can ruin a civilisation

Indeed. Do not forget that just a few generations after Rome, "civilized" men couldn't figure out how to tear down (much less build) an aqueduct...

pst314

No to put too fine a point on it, Hal, but there's precious little original in any of Pratchett's works.

Do not encourage the HAL9000, Daniel. That will only result in further long, tiresome comments with pathologically repetitive links to the unit's favorite Crank Blog.

Sporkatus

The evil is the criminal.

Quite so. A man who steals one day may step up to physical assault the next, and murder next week. No respect for the simple possessions of others typifies a lack of respect for anything belonging to someone else - their face, their limbs, their lives...

The appellation "petty criminal" exists because those who restrain themselves are noteworthy in doing so, and not uncommonly doing so out of fear of repercussions. Even so, many graduate. It's amazing what a lack of consequences can do to empower one.

The fantasy of a nation's worth of Jean Valjeans stealing a TV to hock for a loaf of bread(?) is one promulgated by such as AOC, and bears no resemblance to reality. Thieves steal as and when they can.

There's a reason that Levite law permits fatal retribution in self defense for burglary* in the moment, though obviously it includes a death penalty for many things we'd move to "lock 'em up" these days.

*burglary, as denoted by a thief entering at night, vs. robbery as denoted by a thief entering during the day. If the members of the household are out and the thief is possible to identify, restitution is possible assuming rule of law functions. To enter a home at night includes the malign intent to subdue the homeowner as necessary - as indeed nearly any forced entry can be assumed today. Worth note: the homeowner is not permitted to arrest the thief with lethal force in the act of flight.

anon a mouse

OT

Uh ... whoah ... holy crap

Nothing new. Next up, NASA was actually supported by black women (or something)...

WTP

NASA was actually supported by black women (or something)...

Been there, done that. Or did you already know?

John Lewis

https://youtu.be/f3PJF0YE-x4

In case anyone has not seen this classic routine by a pre-woke Chris Rock do so now before it is memory-holed. The largely black audience is loving every word, how quickly things change.

pst314

In case anyone has not seen this classic routine by a pre-woke Chris Rock do so now before it is memory-holed.

YouTube requires sign-in to view. Here is a link that does not.

Nikw211

Nothing new.

I feel you may have missed the point a little there.

Been there, done that.

From the Wikipedia link:

    Historical accuracy

    The film, set at NASA Langley Research Center in 1961, depicts segregated facilities such as the West Area Computing unit, where an all-black group of female mathematicians were originally required to use separate dining and bathroom facilities. However, in reality, ...

Of course.

    However, in reality, Dorothy Vaughan was promoted to supervisor of West Computing in 1949, becoming the first black supervisor at the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA) and one of the few female supervisors.
Uma Thurmond's Feet

Indeed. Do not forget that just a few generations after Rome, "civilized" men couldn't figure out how to tear down (much less build) an aqueduct...

Apparently, you can date the pottery in some parts of Europe after the empire by their crude design.

anon a mouse

"However, in reality,"

I think I see the real issue, there...

Daniel Ream

Do not encourage the HAL9000, Daniel

I know, I know.

Consider it a live example of the theme of the thread: absent consequences for antisocial behaviour, antisocial behaviour will continue.

burglary, as denoted by a thief entering at night

Roman law under the Republic similarly allowed you to kill an intruder out of hand if you encountered him on your property after dark, but not during the day. The legal principle was that night implied secrecy and secrecy implied evil intent.

WTP

Historical accuracy

Exactly. A long argument with my sister-in-law about this movie where she insisted that those inaccuracies did not matter. Much to the chagrin of everyone else in the Dairy Queen that day, I disagreed. It's movies like this with their denigration of how hard this country did work to overcome racial issues that are a BIG root of the problems we are seeing today...and have been seeing even long before this specific movie...other cultural references in other books, movies, etc...for decades.

And she gets upset today when I simply ask her scientific questions about mask usage and other aspects of this Covid damnpanic. She is a former nurse who rose to middle management at a couple of major healthcare companies (McKesson being just one, as I recall). Also was big on the "emotional intelligence" crap.

Not to overshare, but I'm seriously sinking. My faith in just about everyone and everything is pretty much shot. I have seen this day coming from decades away and for some stupid reason feel like I didn't try hard enough to warn people...well, except for the people in the DQ that night. Looking for coping mechanisms if anyone has any.

pst314

"A long argument with my sister-in-law about this movie where she insisted that those inaccuracies did not matter."

I have read that the movie falsely portrays the black mathematicians as solving problems that baffled the white NASA people rather than as simply competent people who did the job they were assigned. Similarly, Red Tails falsely portrayed the black fighter pilots as being better than all the white pilots with the bogus claim that they never lost a bomber they escorted. Why not simply portray these people as competent? One engineer that I know insisted that these falsehoods did not matter, but dishonest propaganda offends me and I decided to never pay money to see the movies.

anon a mouse

Looking for coping mechanisms if anyone has any.

I'll vote for a distilled product from fermented grains...

Sam

You'll laugh. You'll cry. It's Dr Randomercam so just go and witness the poignant commentary via puppets already.

Darleen

In a way, I'm glad to see an article like this was disappeared within a day -- meaning even a leftwing publication can have a line they don't want to see crossed. However, I'm also glad it was web-archived because there are too many people who are just like the author and too many of them are in positions of power.

archive link: https://web.archive.org/web/20201212152208if_/https://www.scarymommy.com/no-new-white-friends-rule/">https://www.scarymommy.com/no-new-white-friends-rule/">https://web.archive.org/web/20201212152208if_/https://www.scarymommy.com/no-new-white-friends-rule/

Darleen

Oh for heaven's sake ... the preview of the archive link was JUST FINE

grumble grumble -- I shortened the URL and it works this way ...

https://bit.ly/3oUW03R

WTP

Why not simply portray these people as competent? One engineer that I know insisted that these falsehoods did not matter, but dishonest propaganda offends me and I decided to never pay money to see the movies.

Well exactly. The true stories of these three women, at least as much as I could discern, were actually more interesting than the movie. And in pretty much every one of their stories, their overcoming the racism in the system occurred long before there was much, if any, affirmative-action mentality in these organizations.

I'll vote for a distilled product from fermented grains...

Yeah...uh...thx. I have been drinking more lately and it does help but it scares both me and my wife. I never had a real serious drinking problem but I did drink quite a bit in my younger years, like many young men. I generally don't like to let myself have more than three in an evening, limiting even that to Wednesdays and Fridays through Sunday. What really scares me though is that suicide is something of a tradition on both sides of my family, though it skipped my parents' generation. My mother did suffer from depression and I see it in a couple of cousins. I hid it real well until things boiled over about 2012 or so and caught a few close friends off guard. Partly due to these things that I was seeing that doctors and such told me to just laugh about. Now they're dead and here I am with no one to tell "I told you so"....well except maybe you poor schmucks. Forgive me for this now and in the past and I don't really want to scare any body. But damn. I don't know how much more I can take. And not working a deep-thinking job isn't helping much either. I keep hoping I will get to some sort of a "This is the new normal" (and God how I hate that phrase) after this political crap settles down and I see some serious push back. But people on the right scare me more than the left. Surely there are many people on the right much less stable than I am who have not been managing these perceptions as long a I have will crack and the backlash in a society where information is as controlled as it is here and now will be severe.

Again, sorry for the spillage. Not getting much sound sleep so I tend to ramble lately as well. Just looking for some hope.

Uma Thurmond's Feet

I checked out Virginia Duan the Oriental Chinese writer of that "no white friends" article. Her Amazon bio delights in her toxic behavior: "She swears. A lot. She finds it impossible to refrain from commenting online for the sole purpose of making people admit they are idiots. Fatal flaw is fatal. She discusses the deeply uncomfortable and humiliating with biting humor and glimpses of grace; loves the injudicious use of ALLCAPS; is #teamoxfordcomma; and always stans BTS."

Her sole book, "So You Want Your Kid to Learn Chinese," (2017) "hit #1 in Amazon's Chinese Language Instruction section in one day." It has since fallen to 841,000 or so (far less than one sale a day, if that) when it ran up against the current bestsellers in Chinese Language Instruction: "The Art of War," "Chinese Short Stories," and "Confucius: A life from beginning to end."

She seems nice.

David

She seems nice.

The way some of you take up so much space and make everything about you and your feelings

I almost laughed.

Hal

No to put too fine a point on it, Hal, but there's precious little original in any of Pratchett's works.

Do not encourage the . . .

Uh, huh . . . or in more transparent and honest terms:

When noting the adults in the room having discussions, with supporting and researched information, do not declare an empty and unsupportable opposition to the discussion, because when you're asked to explain your denial, all you'll have is yet another round of the greatest hit of Ai D'nno And His All Cricket Orchestra.

Hal

Do not encourage the HAL9000, Daniel

I know, I know.

Consider it a live example of the theme of the thread: absent consequences for antisocial behaviour, antisocial behaviour will continue.

Wellll, describing pst314 as an example of antisocial behaviour might be a bit extreme.

As I've reminded, again, discussion occurs, examples are cited, counter examples are cited, more discussion occurs, Etc . . . .

Now, when the most that pst314 can contribute to the discussion is Noooooooooo!!!!!!!, well, that's there to note as well . . .

Sam

As I've reminded, again, discussion occurs, examples are cited, counter examples are cited, more discussion occurs, Etc . . . .

"As I've often remarked, discussions complete with examples and counter-examples are preferable to snide, vague remarks bereft of hyperlinks. Your refusal to fully engage and rebuke my cogent and cited arguments means I've won yet another Internet Argument."

/ Translated into more transparent and honest terms, smug setting lowered by 4 notches but with additional irony thrown in for seasoning.

David

Hal,

Your comments are generally incomprehensible and/or boring. As a result, your welcome here has expired. Play elsewhere.

Governor Squid

Oh, man. If I'd known that an opening was coming up this soon, I'd have worked a lot harder on publishing my manifesto.

Any of the rest of you in a position to step up?

David

Any of the rest of you in a position to step up?

[ Slightly manic laugh. ]

I generally give commenters plenty of leeway and, being on thin ice, am fairly tolerant of wordy rambling. For the most part, I’m also happy for commenters to argue, so long as it’s informative, fairly civil, or at least entertaining. But it gets tiresome having to mentally tune out Hal’s self-satisfied word-piles and the subsequent irritation of other commenters. I’ve seen the same dance dozens of times now.

Daniel Ream

Not to overshare, but I'm seriously sinking. My faith in just about everyone and everything is pretty much shot. I have seen this day coming from decades away and for some stupid reason feel like I didn't try hard enough to warn people...well, except for the people in the DQ that night. Looking for coping mechanisms if anyone has any.

You are not alone, WTP. I'm struggling with this myself. Fortunately (?) I have an alcohol allergy so drinking myself into a stupor isn't an option, but as a gregarious extrovert the enforced lockdown is really hitting me hard and being able to work all day without pants is not the compensation I was expecting. I've got friends who are terrified of interacting with anyone because their children, the least vulnerable demographic, might get Chinese Lung AIDS. I've pointed out all the published and peer reviewed stats that show there's no there there, but they're all content to continue cowering and allowing ever more suppression of their basic freedoms. Pusillanimous wine moms, all.

I wish I had any suggestions. Do you have an XBox?

your welcome here has expired

Now I kind of feel bad for poking the bear. One thing I like about this place is the generally genial tone.

David

Now I kind of feel bad for poking the bear. One thing I like about this place is the generally genial tone.

[ Passes out sticky, half-inflated balloons. ]

pst314

One thing I like about this place is the generally genial tone.

Come to think of it, it's been a while since I've been sent to the Correction Booth. What to do, what to do....

pst314

the enforced lockdown is really hitting me hard

It's not a sufficient compensation, but I've found that taking long walks can help: (1) Sunshine! (2) Random encounters with people walking, working in their yards: even just waving or saying hello in passing is nice. And when going in and out sometimes see neighbors and stop to talk for a few minutes.

pst314

...and a session in the Correction Booth may not be exactly pleasurable but it is a sort of physical contact....

Governor Squid

I'm fortunate to be well acquainted with my local publican, so even though everything in Minnesota is shut down, I have the option of going to the pub once or twice a week for some unsanctioned socializing. (Sneaking down the alley to knock on the back door feels deliciously subversive!)

I'll also second the value of getting outside. A little fresh air and sunshine does wonders, and if you have the opportunity to see kids running around in yards or playgrounds, that's a bonus. One nice aspect is that you (by definition) don't run into the nervous nellies who are afraid to leave their houses.

The Lovely Bride and I have made it a priority to get outside at lunchtime. When you have less than nine hours of daylight to work with, the after-dinner constitutional just isn't practical. Plus, we need to paint the house, so getting out in the daylight gives us a chance to shop around for color schemes that we like.

Speaking of light and the lack thereof -- we've invested in a few full-spectrum lamps, and I tend to keep my living and working spaces as brightly lit as I can, especially on cloudy days when there's little light from outside. I'm not sure if it's psychosomatic, but I really don't care -- I have more positive energy when there's plenty of light around.

ComputerLabRat

Not to overshare, but I'm seriously sinking. My faith in just about everyone and everything is pretty much shot. I have seen this day coming from decades away and for some stupid reason feel like I didn't try hard enough to warn people...well, except for the people in the DQ that night. Looking for coping mechanisms if anyone has any.

Here too, although I haven't admitted it anywhere else. And although I've laid in a supply of alcoholic beverages, I generally only consume on weekends, and sparingly, because they mostly just give me a hangover. You'd think my avoidance of most of my usual internet reading would give me time to focus on my research, and all sorts of papers and such would come out, but nope. I better find some coping mechanism fast, because eventually my lack of work output is gonna catch up.

Who was that prescient genius who said "A republic, if you can keep it."

pst314

I'm not sure if it's psychosomatic, but I really don't care -- I have more positive energy when there's plenty of light around.

I believe there is solid evidence that sunlight/full spectrum light is psychologically beneficial.

Sam

My faith in just about everyone and everything is pretty much shot.

Don't know about y'all but the enjoyment I used to gain from following local and world politics has turned into a a low grade nightmare, like being forced to witness loved ones in an excruciatingly slow motion car crash. And now politics permeate everything, and I'm frankly jealous of the normies' petty fears about football cancellations and distance learning.

Or, as my wife succinctly put it: "Their shit isn't funny anymore."

I try to keep perspective, hold my family, and generally enjoy what I have. But it has become impossible to ignore the slope we are openly headed down.

anon a mouse

My faith in just about everyone and everything is pretty much shot.

Well, I'm lucky then, as I had little such faith to start with. Call it a naturally pessimistic streak...

I think I'll have a cigar. It's sunny and around 60 F outside, so there's that.

Steve E

(Sneaking down the alley to knock on the back door feels deliciously subversive!)

Well, Minneapolis/St. Paul were home to several notorious speakeasies during prohibition if I'm not mistaken. The firm I worked for hosted a party in a restaurant there that was said to have been a regular spot for Al Capone. I can't remember if it was one that had been carved out of the sandstone caves or not.

So you're in a great spot to be both subversive and notorious. ;-)

Farnsworth M Muldoon

...they mostly just give me a hangover...

You are just drinking the wrong stuff. Top shelf vodka and/or gin are the way to go to avoid hangovers. It is science.

My faith in just about everyone and everything is pretty much shot.

Then take a tip from The Christmas Atheist*.

*I am not sure he knows what "atheist" means.

Steve E

Then take a tip from The Christmas Atheist*.

Yes our founding principles in Canada are "Peace, Order, and Good Government." Far more inspiring than "Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness" or "Liberté, Egalité, Fraternité"...if you're a loony leftie. ;P

We're still waiting for the "Good Government" part up here. Too many have conflated abject prostration before the ruling class with good government.

Daniel Ream

Too many have conflated abject prostration before the ruling class with good government

It was Mark Steyn who said that the Canadian national delusion was that government was the font of all beneficence and wisdom.

And thanks all for the advice. Unfortunately due to an odd quirk of municipal planning I live in an neighbourhood that is over 25% seniors. I'm knocking on the underside of fifty and I'm the youngest person in my apartment complex. What that means is that even if the sun manages to pierce the southwestern Ontario gloom of an afternoon, going for a walk still feels like one of the later episodes of The Stand.

I think I'll invest in some full spectrum bulbs. Gov. Squid, can you recommend a brand/source?

But it has become impossible to ignore the slope we are openly headed down.

I am on the cusp of having to decide whether My Lady Fair and True is to become Mrs. My Lady Fair and True, and while this would normally be an occasion for much celebration the prospect of attempting to save up enough to purchase a house (much less fill it with children) in a country where the "finance" minister just openly mused about seizing people's RRSPs and savings accounts to fund a Chinese Lung AIDS "stimulus" is filling me with dread.

WTP

OK...oversharing again but maybe this helps someone...or maybe it's just embarrassing whining...I'll know the minute (if) I hit post...

Do you have an XBox?

Yeah...unfortunately, no. I have considered taking up computer games (Spider solitaire for one...I'm a simple man) as I can get addicted. Tried getting back into Spider over the summer but my distraction level is such that it's gotten very frustrating for me to watch my winning percentages shrink. Perhaps Tetris however...hmm...again, simple tastes...

The things that I have been doing are much as already suggested here...long walks in sunshine (a habit anyway since my rotator cuff has me sidelined from swimming). We do make an effort to go out to dinner at least once a week and now lunch at least once, usually al fresco as we're in Florida. It is good to be amongst people but my wife is becoming less and less appreciative of other people. We are starting to argue about that. Which isn't helping. I get out to shoot pool once a week, so there's that. I keep telling myself that I'll go to the pool hall and practice a couple times a week but I have yet to drag myself out to do so. The honey-do list was getting worked down until Christmas and budget and rotator cuff limitations caused a pull back. The thing about low-thinking work is my mind drifts back to the situation we're in and I'm not sure if that sort of thing is helping me. It's kind of like at night where, thank God I'm at least able to fall asleep but then wake up at 3AM thinking about stuff again. A few dozen rounds of "round-and-round the mulberry bush" in my head sometimes helps me get back to sleep. But it's an off-and-on kind of thing most nights after 3AM. Prayer did work a couple of times, but I'm afraid I'm not very good at it. Hence the mulberry bush thing...

I also am forcing myself to address home owner's association issues (I'm the schmuck who lost the musical chairs game and am stuck as president). That keeps me busy on some days, but frustrating as hell trying to coordinate time and such with other people even as I now have a much more open schedule than when I was working. It was raining one day and a contractor asked me if I still wanted to meet with him. I told him that the weather didn't concern me much but I'm a bit odd as I was raised by a man who crossed open beaches to attack Japanese machine gun nests so my perceptions of risk are different than most people. I often come very close to the edge of snapping at people and I'm generally regarded by (now ex) coworkers has having extraordinary patience. See, I think it's lack of sufficient quality sleep that has me so bloody irritable.

I generally only consume on weekends, and sparingly, because they mostly just give me a hangover.
Heh...and there's another problem. If/when I do drink, the slightest hangover worries me that I'm getting sick. I never used to be like this. I'm the type that I have to be heaving my guts out to let a sickness stop me. But I know that's bad, bad, bad now. But again...parents who were tough, so...

Don't know about y'all but the enjoyment I used to gain from following local and world politics has turned into a a low grade nightmare, like being forced to witness loved ones in an excruciatingly slow motion car crash.
Same for me...it's like everything that I've ever cared about has been butchered. And there's no end in sight. I'm digging for something to hold on to. I don't think I've ever had a nightmare as bad as what I'm perceiving every day. I suppose I've been lucky that way.
and I'm frankly jealous of the normies' petty fears about football cancellations
Bingo.

I think I'll have a cigar. It's sunny and around 60 F outside, so there's that.
We are having nice weather and expect to hit the beach tomorrow. So at least I'm not in say Pittsburgh or (God forbid) Cincinnati or (God kill me now) Cleveland. But still...I think if I won the lottery tomorrow it wouldn't cheer me up. I used to only consume cigars to celebrate stuff. I have one left in the humidor, perhaps I should give it a burn on Christmas.

Well, Minneapolis/St. Paul were home to several notorious speakeasies during prohibition if I'm not mistaken.
Heh. The speakeasy thing was making a comeback last year with the younger/hipster crowd. We went to two in downtown Orlando that were kind of fun. One was in an old shoe store and the idea was you picked up the password off of their twitter feed to be let in the door. Though there was no shoe store anymore except for the name on the building. It was plainly a regular bar but with a back room you got into with the password. What was so cool about these places though was that they had a dress code. It did my heart such good to see younger people out on the town looking neat, clean, and respectable. I'd be willing to bet that the young people in most towns under lockdowns have something similar going on. God, I hope so.

On the good news front, I do see the 9000 series has been retired. Well there's that. Though after I snapped back at it a couple years ago it kinda stopped interacting with me.

Well I do feel a tiny bit better than I did before I sat down here. Outside of financially connected rumination, I don't believe I have ever thanked you David for the space you provide here...so, uh....thanks again. And thanks to all those who comment here. This place is just about my last bastion of sanity. I feel almost normal here.

Daniel Ream

Yeah...unfortunately, no. I have considered taking up computer games

The reason I ask is that if you can avoid the ones designed to be deliberately addictive, there are some that might help with the mulberry bush problem. An XBox One X or PS4 Pro can be had for about $250CAD around here, and for about $6/mo you can play online with other people if you can find some good blokes. It's socialization, problem solving, and distraction.

Games like Surviving Mars, No Man's Sky, or Stardew Valley will have you exploring a virtual world and building up a colony, trade network, or farming empire from a handful of nails and stubborn perseverance. Thinking through the necessary supply chains and dependencies are a good distraction from the real world and there's no twitch reflexes necessary. These kinds of games also have less...strident fanbases, so you can discuss strategies. If you like stories, games like Red Dead Redemption 2, The Witcher, and Kingdom Come: Deliverance can keep you occupied for hours.

If all you want is distraction and (like me) your reflexes aren't what they once were, there's an entire genre of games dubbed "walking simulators" that consist entirely of just exploring a virtual environment.

Ricard Cranium

Or you play something like Rise of the Triad, which was rebooted in 2012 (not sure, I'd have to look on Steam to see), which is a pure blood fest.

It is extremely sad that I find sawing an enemy in half with a submachine gun to be a thing to lift my spirits. (And I know better than that after perusing a volume of WW2 medical reports that included B/W photos of sample wounds. There was one of a soldier who had taken an anti-tank round on his head. The result was very similar to my shooting a pellet gun into a bank of mud.)

@WTP, it always ends for us mortals (unless there is something special about you that you haven't told us).

Daniel Ream

I find as I get older the thrill of mindless destruction pales and the allure of building something positive - even virtually - provides more satisfaction. Perhaps it's all that riot footage.

On the other hand, I'm about as good an architect as I am a jazz soloist so games like Space Engineers and Sims are not in my wheelhouse.

John Lewis

Personally I refuse to go back on the happy pills or slip back towards alcohol (those were dark days) even though we’re forced to suspend so much that is good and important and robotically pretend to be in the presence of something deadly and unprecedented - which is in fact a virus that doesn’t actually kill 99.98% of people under 80.

To WTP, a commentator of considerable good sense and decent nature, I send my encouragement. Hang tough, eventually even our moronic leaders will have to accept that the there which was hardly ever there has finally run its course. In the meantime keep posting, don’t bottle it all up.

David

This place is just about my last bastion of sanity.

No pressure, then.

Deus Vulture

I wrote in another forum about Northwestern University scrubbing an “emeritus lecturer,” Joseph Epstein, from its website and issuing an apology for the temerity of association with him after he penned a piece in the Wall Street Journal, jocularly saying that Jill Biden should drop the “Doctor” title she proudly flaunts, it being a PhD in Education, earned with her scholarly thesis on how to retain students in community colleges.

One person commented that one can’t call it a “cancellation” because the web page, according to them, was “at least twenty years out of date.”

It strikes me that that reasoning can be applied here. Is it really theft if Old Lady Johnson has had that ring for over 50 years? After all, she has had a long time to enjoy it so it is equitable that it be shared with another.

Come on, that TV set was five years old! The technology has changed so much that the marginalized person taking it is arguably doing you a favor, allowing you the opportunity to buy a new one and ... no, wait, the TV was five years old? You had nothing better to offer someone who has suffered from an oppression you would know nothing about?! Racist!

David

I have considered taking up computer games

After parsing the derangements of the woke in an attempt to entertain you heathens, it’s quite refreshing to play an MMOG – a massively multiplayer online game – in my case, Hades’ Star - and to realise that the people you’re interacting with, in half a dozen different countries, have zero discernible interest in this week’s Rules Of Woke Conformity And Spite, except perhaps an occasional mocking comment, and are overwhelmingly friendly and obliging. In fact, one of the things I hadn’t expected, and rather enjoy, is the spirit of camaraderie.

[ Added: ]

I didn’t think online multiplayer games would be my kind of thing. I assumed they’d be populated by autistic teenagers from Russia and China. But I’ve been playing Hades’ Star for over a year now and, while there are certainly some players who are, shall we say, unusually focused, especially at higher levels, it’s a very mixed crowd. Someone asked sheepishly if their dad could join the corporation that I’m part of and he turned out to be a much better player than the son who was asking. Nobody seems to care whether you’re a dad, for instance, or anything else.

anon a mouse

in an attempt to entertain you heathens

See, our genial host does love us...

David

See, our genial host does love us...

Let’s not go nuts.

ComputerLabRat

After parsing the derangements of the woke in an attempt to entertain you heathens, it’s quite refreshing to play an MMOG – a massively multiplayer online game

I also game, as an outlet and escape from the hellish nightmare that is reality at the moment. It's an old MMORP(role-playing)G, and I'm amazed at how many older people play the game. And similarly uninterested in the whole Woke thing. Although some days I can't even find interest in my game, books, or hobbies, and that's worrisome. The mulberry bush problem I solved with audiobooks from the library on my phone - force ye olde brain the shut up and focus on something trivial and allow me to fall asleep.

This place is just about my last bastion of sanity.

Here as well - it's about the only blog or site I visit anymore, so thanks, David, and to your commenters as well. I work at a Uni, in the belly of the Woke beast (it's devoured STEM, sadly), and it's refreshing to come here for a breath of fresh air.

Governor Squid

I think I'll invest in some full spectrum bulbs.

My wife is a stitcher, so she has a couple of OttLites that serve her well. I'm less concerned about wavelengths and more about lumens, so I've just replaced a bunch of old incandescent bulbs with brighter LED bulbs. I also put a little Menards LED work light in my office, shining against the wall opposite me. It was initially an attempt to get my face to show up on Zoom meetings (I was previously just a silhouette), but I find that I really like the additional photons, so the lamp stays on for pretty much the whole work day.

I have considered taking up computer games

I've been splitting my time between conquering the galaxy (Stellaris) and trying to survive winter in iron-age Finland (Unreal World). Though I occasionally fire up an old copy of American McGee's Alice so that I can pretend I'm a fifteen-year-old girl with a butcher knife. Horses for courses, and all that.

(I played Hades Star for a few months, but never embraced the cooperative aspect with corporations and whatnot. Now I regret not being able to annoy David in another environment. Alas!)

WTP

Thanks to all for the kind words. Especially Mr. Lewis.

No pressure, then. Heh. None whatsoever. God bless you.

While I've grown rather bored with sci-fi (gave up on The Expanse on the third episode) I was curious early on (late 1980s?) about SimCity. Thought it was rather weak at the time and the more I heard about it the more silly, immature it seemed. That pessimism said, looking at this Hades' Star thing and the marketing of it in regard to time commitment and such seems like an ideal thing for me. Downloaded it to my iPad. Since it looks like we will be headed to the beach today (don't be jelly, ATKS), I don't plan to get set up on it until later after we get back. Any advice on early options? The first thing that pops up is asking about visibility choices. My instinct is to start out private ("Only you") but as connections might help me, does it really matter what if choose "Everyone"? Any other startup tips would be greatly appreciated. As a software developer I've often had this (mostly unsupported and thus mostly irrational) fear of making the wrong choice early in a configuration setup that ends up biting me in the butt when I least expect it. Happened like...twice, maybe in 30+ years. That said, it feels kinda good to feel a bit of excitement about something new.

Also something that just occurred to me that some here might be able to share. I am somewhat of a minor historian on WWII, especially in the Pacific where my father fought. I'm currently reading a new book about the Okinawa invasion Bloody Okinawa, which was of all the battles he was in the one that he spoke of the most with me in his later years. So far it's pretty good and seems well researched. If anyone knows of a good WWII Pacific Theater discussion group or blog or such, that might help keep me distracted. About 20 years ago I was in an email group with people who posted a lot about Dad's 17th Infantry regiment, but that pretty much died out after a year or so. I've gone searching off-and-on for something similar but the discussion areas that I have found tend to go months without comment or die out after a few months. Though I suppose that would be expected as the topic's information domain is rather static. Plus there's the danger of people simply inventing stuff just to get attention.

Again, thanks to all.

David

I played Hades Star for a few months, but never embraced the cooperative aspect with corporations and whatnot. Now I regret not being able to annoy David in another environment. Alas!

Heh. It’s a long-haul, slow-burn game and I like the combination of methodical empire-building and against-the-clock mayhem. It starts off deceptively simple - sort of, “Is this it…?” - and gradually becomes more complicated and challenging, with each level requiring new tactics and greater cooperation. I played solo for five levels then was invited to join a corp. At which point, the game becomes a lot more fun, spilling over onto Discord, with artefact dealers and such.

Rs8, XP level 195, Influence 24,052. Since you ask.

David

Any advice on early options?

There’s a Wiki, inevitably.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

It is extremely sad that I find sawing an enemy in half with a submachine gun to be a thing to lift my spirits. (And I know better...)

No reason to feel sad, particularly in light of the knowing better comment. Virtual reality combat simulation is being used to treat PTSD, so your spirit lifting reaction, regardless of whether one has had to deal with disassembled people other than in photos, is not exactly abnormal.

Assuming, having been an armor guy, that you are not having flashbacks to rolling out of the kaserne on alert to take up positions in the Fulda Gap to execute the school solution, the former foe make a game you might like called "Tank Crew - Clash at Prokhorovka" which recreates historical events during the Battle of Kursk and spirit lifting T-34s.

pst314

See, our genial host does love us...

"You like me, you really like me!"
--Sally Field

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