Blogs

The Best Days of the Trump Presidency

The Best Days of the Trump Presidency

I have learned a few serenity lessons along the way, having been a typically shy-but-exuberant child and a normally anguished-at-times-by-love teenager. Emoting can be fun when it involves a bodily thrill short of nausea or panic or grief.  Outrage is then physical, in anger, disgust, just as with alarm, fear, and ever more physical as emotions heighten or become infused with more potent bodily energy -- to Rage, Revulsion, Terror.  How to keep your head when all around you are losing theirs. 

william.scherk

william.scherk

Bones (and flesh) of Contention

Bones (and flesh) of Contention

I will put the whole list of unremarkables and red-zoned claims/statements, perhaps regrouping them, and adding links where appropriate. I have been hungering for some kind of discussion with OLers on climatology's raging discourse. This may be the opening, a list of contentious contentions, and notes on same. Sharpen the dialogue, deepen the inquiry, get over the hurdles of shared knowledge. To the curb with unwarranted assumptions, as we dig. I do believe reasoned and reasonable inquiry can gi

william.scherk

william.scherk

C-SPAN, Strzok, live feed

C-SPAN, Strzok, live feed

Live, from Miami Beach, it's the Jackie Gleason Show! Actually, I wish. Today my Twitter feed was a go go with Peter Strzok answering questions from a combined committee of the House, ostensibly part of "Clinton Email Investigation.  I give but the link, since I don't have the knowledge or right to embed. https://www.c-span.org/video/?447953-12/fbi-deputy-assistant-director-peter-strzok-testifies-2016-investigations [Added: yesterday's hearing has been made embeddable:]

william.scherk

william.scherk

Essay on the Deep State, by Mike Lofgren

Essay on the Deep State, by Mike Lofgren

Do you ever get slightly confused by the term "Deep State," or wonder if another person is sensing the same concept as you? Here's an interesting analytical essay by Mike Lofgren, author of the book "The Deep State."  Anatomy of the Deep State   -- who knew there was a website called Wikispooks.com?  Here's a link to their page on Deep State, which uncovers the interesting provenance of the phrase ...

william.scherk

william.scherk

Test Bed -- brainstorming Weather Gods, or, a thrillah about the world's weather system and its manipulators

Test Bed -- brainstorming Weather Gods, or, a thrillah about the world's weather system and its manipulators

I thought Caroljane and Michael had some interesting  brainstorm results, laid out below. I also had some storms of creativity ... which I will add once I finish furiously scribbling notes on a break by the river. We have secretly kept everything green behind our fencing, despite the water-restrictions. I hate when Israel steals our clouds all summer. My basic notion is weather weapons, weapons of war, that is what the protagonists come to be up against, discovering and destroying the milit

william.scherk

william.scherk

Top Twitter feeds

Top Twitter feeds

A Twitter List by wsscherk is my compilation of accounts our dear Leader follows. This post originally was a summer test of embedding such a thing on a page, which I did later do with both the Salon and anti-Salon lists elsewhere.  Sorry if Michael felt his privacy invaded -- this post was put on a "Publish later" schedule and forgotten about until it popped up.  In any case, Twitter Lists are a means to narrowly focus and sample tweets from interest groups, subject areas, kooks and cr

william.scherk

william.scherk

All Polls Are Wrong

All Polls Are Wrong

The phrase "all polls are wrong" was a cool hinge-point of argument last year, as the Trump train rolled on ... Yesterday a Democrat penned an interesting article at The Hill. It didn't say that "all polls are wrong," but that surveys of President Trump's popularity in the USA are flawed and in no way indicative. In other words ... Why the polls are still wrong.  Here's a few excerpts from the article: The Penn article also received some pushback, in this instance from Philip Bump o

william.scherk

william.scherk

Killing NAFTA

Killing NAFTA

Bloomberg has a short Trump-whisperer item on the President's supposed impatience with negotiations to "update" the North American Free Trade Agreement. Trump’s Impatience Emerging as Biggest Threat to Nafta Agreement Some of you may have read the earlier report in which he instructs General Kelly that he "wants tariffs" ... while his weepy loser staff won't bring him tariffs. That report could be 100% shit, and since said tariffs were to be imposed on China, not perhaps pertinent

william.scherk

william.scherk

Friends and foes chatter [Updated]

Friends and foes chatter [Updated]

Chat instructions via video! So, my new "livecasting" set-up is  coming along. Today I botched a brief video header for this topic. I insert it just for fun. The other voice you hear is young Jordan Sather; since I wasn't wearing the headphones, I didn't know he was talking. He is talking about the Toronto attack, obliquely,  via Qanon. I will replace this with a better version where the sounds make sense and I wear the headphones as I mix. I wanted to demonstrate how easy it is to add

william.scherk

william.scherk

SCIAM: "Cognitive Ability and Vulnerability to Fake News"

SCIAM: "Cognitive Ability and Vulnerability to Fake News"

The article "Cognitive Ability and Vulnerability to Fake News" appeared at the Scientific American website on February 6th. Its subheadline is "Researchers identify a major risk factor for pernicious effects of misinformation."  The article makes for interesting reading, whether you consider 'fake news' a classifier for broad swaths of the information landscape, or whether you consider 'fake news' to be particular items that are inaccurate, infused with partisan bias, subject to grotesque e

william.scherk

william.scherk

 

Release the MEMO

The Hill reports the 'breaking' news that the White House has approved the public release of the MEMO. The MEMO was crafted by staff of the United States House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence (HPSCI). From an earlier report ...  

william.scherk

william.scherk

Tribes, Tribalism, Tribulations

Tribes, Tribalism, Tribulations

When Two Tribes Go To War ... Taking this topic out from the conspiracy thread here at Friends and Foes. I  want to look at how we discern tribalisms, membership, shibboleths and associated markers.    Define: William's tribe. Define: Michael's tribe.   List: core beliefs of Michael's tribe (sacred cows) List: core beliefs of William's tribe (sacred cows) Once a core belief of Michael's / William's tribal affiliates is identified, plug the details

william.scherk

william.scherk

 

Ayn Rand Sightings -- The Fountainhead in LA Review of Books

I was alerted to this review by one of the folks I follow on Twitter, Robert Tracinski: A small excerpt from the offending review with a bit of Rand news that I missed highlighted: -- I am half-convinced that we already noted the Amsterdam theatre group's adaptation in an earlier OL post, but my attempts to find that note are foiled by the search facility, which has gremlins at the moment. [Edit: gremlins vanquished:; the link goes to Michael's note of the earlier sighting

william.scherk

william.scherk

Cult Warning Signs

Cult Warning Signs

From Rick Ross's Cult Education Institute -- Getting Started: See also the fascinating Objectivist Living topic, "Secret Objectivist Cult," a funny and intriguing thread started by Dear Leader seven years ago:  I am a big fan of Tony Ortega's blog The Underground Bunker. Tony is former editor of the Village Voice, where he began his decade-long examination of Scientology. Some readers here may have seen him on various episodes of the Leah Remini cable series "Scientology and the Aft

william.scherk

william.scherk

 

Iran, detailed reporting, VOA live-blog

Most readers will already of course be reacting to the events in Iran. As I use Twitter I realize that 40% of the 'factness' of reported events is analysis and posturing. On the fourth day of protests, getting the fine grain of these events is not easy, since you have to plow through so much crap. Greta van Susteren tweeted a useful link to the VOA live blog. It is not a trove of details, but a terse timeline. Including President Trump's tweets. The most awful analyses are coming from

william.scherk

william.scherk

 

23 Reasons Objectivists (Might) Love Roy Moore [Updated]

Elsewhere on Objectivist-Trumpism Living, the Republican run-off between Luther Strange and Roy Moore was highlighted.  ... It made me wonder just what qualities and policies an Objectivish person might celebrate in the Republican candidate for the December 12 special Senate election. I have narrowed it down to 24 attributes exemplified in direct quotes from the man ... "Homosexual conduct should be illegal" “We have blacks and whites fighting, r

william.scherk

william.scherk

 

"Concept Creep"

Some thoughts from the author of 'The Righteous Mind,' Jonathan Haidt (see OL mentions here), at Spiked online:  The Fragile Generation -- my favourite conceptual creep is with the weasel-term "Fake News."  Where the species-genera distinction is obscured mightily. On an unrelated note, "Hate whomever you want. It's your right."  Lauren Southern bashes back at micro-aggressions from the folks at Reason TV.  

william.scherk

william.scherk

 

What is loaded language, and how can we make best use of it?

I came across an entry at the place called "Rational Wiki." The biases of the wiki are evidently left-wing, if not progressive, if not evul. Ostensibly ... Here's the loaded language page header (click through).  One of the more fraught uses of 'prejudicial language' is identified as "snarl words."  Isn't using 'snarl words' part of the fun of online discussion? -- surveying the Wiki site's entries, it made me think of a kind of weight in Ayn Rand's language in both fiction and

william.scherk

william.scherk

 

The Arab Tyrants Manual (podcast)

Readers will have seen this week one tyrant near the end of his reign -- Mugabe in Zimbabwe, who will likely be impeached next month -- and may have speculated on what the ruckus in Saudia Arabia portends for the family autocracy there (setting aside humanitarian catastrophe in Yemen). I've been following the activist Iyad el-Baghdadi for quite a while on Twitter. He was jailed and expelled from Saudi Arabia and found refuge in Norway, after having become a stinging thorn in the side of aut

william.scherk

william.scherk

 

MILO and the third rail

Glorp Glorp Glorp. Madame Macron is a pedophile. They never stop. Everyone knows that. Elsewhere on the blog ... Here is the promised video+audio of Milo Yiannopoulos discussing his youthful sexual activity, through the lens of a provocative gay man, with material from two podcasts, one internet radio show, and a press conference ...  

william.scherk

william.scherk