Blogs

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

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, re

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.  

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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

"Atheist Terrorism" in small-town Texas

Another repulsive mass-murder in America. Another 'type' of and motive for killing, this time a "creepy" and militant atheism -- at least according to some media outlets. Our old pal Baxter Dmitry adds a bit of fey canoes ...  Texas church shooting – Facebook rants of ‘creepy’ gunman Devin Kelley, 26, who preached about atheism before killing 26 churchgoers Devin Kelley, 26, who carried out the worst mass shooting in Texas' history, ranted on Facebook about churchgoers being 'stupid

william.scherk

william.scherk

The "Paradise Papers"

Remember the Panama Papers -- the leaking of millions of financial documents, some of which showed the lengths some big players will go to in evading taxes and financial supervision?  There is a new tranche of unveiled financial documents in town. An investigation by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists has turned up a wide range of financial hanky panky. Here's a brief video: The Paradise Papers – Secrets Of The Global Elite Although a story featured el

william.scherk

william.scherk

25 Not Salon-Approved Conservatives Worth Following on Twitter

Mike LaChance is a contributor to the website "Legal Insurrection." His article "25 Not Salon-Approved Conservatives Worth Following on Twitter" wryly comments on an article at boo-hiss Salon. So I made a Twitter list. -- both LaChance and Salon writer Taylor Link address the point of 'the bubble,'' AKA 'information silos,' a tendency to consume news and commentary drawn only from a pool of like-minded people. One of the things I bear in mind as a Twitter consumer. Extend my purview, a

william.scherk

william.scherk

Annotating Regi Firehammer's essay on Evolution

I am intrigued by Regi Firehammer's article on Evolution, which is published at USAbig.com. With his permission, I have re-published it at my website with my annotations, suggestions and notes. I will keep this blog entry locked until I have finished the first set of notes. Below is the essay as it stands. -- here is my annotated version as published. My work is incomplete now mostly complete, although the frame will 'update' if the work proceeds and I revise the file. Thanks, Regi, f

william.scherk

william.scherk

Gaseous burbles from "the swamp"

Former President George W Bush doesn't usually make much news, but a speech he gave at his Presidential Center has the usual suspects dragging out portions of his speech for crimes against Trump.  The theme of the conflab at the Bush Center was "The Spirit of Liberty: At Home, In the World." Here is the full speech, and below I add in the full text. Some  folks think it was an unfair attack on the current President (or his perfect policies and actions). You listen, you read, you decide

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william.scherk

Ayn Rand sightings

Two long and involved articles that touch -- if only briefly -- on Randian ideas in culture.  The first features Arthur Robinson (of interest to our intrepid Brant Gaede) and the second drags its hooks through 'right wing' science-fiction. Although I am familiar with some of Arthur Robinson's activities, the article on him has dug up a lot of detail, and is fairly well-written -- despite its bias. The 'right-wing' science fiction article has a case of over-reach, but as with the Robinson ar

william.scherk

william.scherk

Dinesh D'Souza sez Hitler was not anti-gay

Twitter is a phenomenon indeed. Yesterday Dinesh D'Souza let off the mental equivalent of a wet fart ... and reaped a whirlwind of reaction, as they say: Is he stupid, misinformed, caught in a mental litter-box, or is he all three? In other "integrity in reporting" news, Milo Yiannopoulos and Breitbart were subjects of a 'bombshell' report at Buzzfeed that has been in the works for a few months, based on a trove of emails (presumably hacked by 'muh Russians' ...). It is the equiva

william.scherk

william.scherk

Las Vegas massacre byproducts

A glimpse of the worst kind of 'reporting' ... from the Gateway Pundit, determined to put something out there to agitate and draw clicks, regardless of truth: Then there are those who go with the first thing on their minds (a sample): -- and of course, the "news" from good old 'Baxter Dmitry' ... spinning hard, and adding a "false flag" note drawn from his asshole. Helpfully, the ghouls at Infowars are busting a gut to lay blame ... Alex Jones

william.scherk

william.scherk

Introducing Jagmeet Singh

The two major national parties in Canada are the Liberals and the Conservatives. The third national party is called "The New Democratic Party" or NDP.  The party has just selected this guy, Jagmeet Singh as their leader ... Jagmeet Singh wins NDP leadership race on first ballot He will become the first Sikh to lead a national party. Singh attracted some national and international attention for how he dealt with a finger-wagging heckler at one of his leadership campaign meetings la

william.scherk

william.scherk

It's Flag Day in Puerto Rico

There is at least one American territory where the stand-up-when-the-President-tells-you-to brouhaha is not pertinent, the island of Puerto Rico.  Apparently, some storm lashed the island and left a bit of a mess. The President is probably demanding flag-obedience before unleashing any aid.  Speaking of aid, here is a mental aid in the form of visual imagery. Back to your regular programming, where dissent is cancer.

william.scherk

william.scherk

Shock Therapy

Could be interpreted as meaning the US is 'considering' stopping all trade with Russia, China, Iran, Sudan, Syria, Venezuela, and a list of other countries of lesser note.  If you interpret it as a threat of consequence, it could  have been designed to merely send a message to the biggest two-way trade partner, the People's Republic: Uncle Sam envisions extreme measures short of war, targeted at enabler nations. From another angle, the "all trade" is blufftrump, while the biggest offender s

william.scherk

william.scherk